booksofafeather: A book and candlestick, with a feather lying across the pages. (Default)
Short review: This is a companion book to an art exhibit by Peter Greenaway, which was held at the Louvre in 1992. It's fitting for a book on an art exhibit that the writing is lovely, thoughtful and philosophical. Your opinion of the art will very depending on your taste of course, but, the comments on it truly spark some really fascinating thoughts for anyone winged. Much of the pictures don't seem like they really have anything to do with the subject, but, Greenaway is creative and the ideas he draws out of the paintings definitely make you think twice. Absolutely must have in any winged person's collection... if you can afford it.

Writing: The writing is wonderful, asking many interesting philosophical questions, while following a journey through art from the ground, to the sky, and then falling to the ground again. The writer treats the book as catalogue of philosophical flying instructions, containing secrets how we might fly, and presents this in a very serious way. There's also a lot of beautiful art to enjoy obviously.

From a winged person's perspective...: Of course, this book is all about the winged. The writer understands the longing for flying, how no machine will do, our offspring will not do... we must fly. He understands that false flying portrayals make us feel let down. Really, the book is all about that longing for flight, treated as a very serious thing. The "story" of the book, as much as it has a story, has a negative message about flight in the end, but it's such a beautiful journey and the negative message seems to be more about showing all the possibilities and angles that artists have treated flight, not making a judgment.

Trigger warnings: Graphic description of dead bird. Detached wings in a picture. Association of flight with negative pride, detailed descriptions of failing of flight.

More thoughts... )
booksofafeather: A book and candlestick, with a feather lying across the pages. (Default)
I thought I will write these two reviews together, because the first one is a quite short book and the second one is not very relevant to the theme, but, it's here because a lot of library catalogues list it under "Fiction: Flying" and the cover shows a boy trying to fly. Because of that, I feel my duty to talk about the book even to tell you it's not very fitting.

I also decided to do a new thing from now... for the picture books, I'm going to scan one page of the book and show it here. Then, if you are collecting it for the art you can see if you like the art.

So, here are the reviews ^^

Short review (Unicorn Wings): A very simple child's book that is written for readers from "preschool" to "grade 1" in America, with very beautiful pictures and a nice, simple, sweet story with a good message. There's not much for older people but if you are looking for an inspiring book about joy, friendship and magic, to give to a very young child, this is the one ^^

Short review (The Not-Just-Anybody Family): An older child's book that has a "crazy adventure with an odd family" feeling. The writing is fun, but the part about flying is just at the beginning and then it's forgotten very soon, among all the other daredevil mischief. It's a fun book with no bad messages but, there's not much here for winged people.

Snowy white swansWriting (Unicorn Wings): Very simple... there is no poetry. It's a "someone just learning to read" book. Because of that, older people might find it boring, and the ending is not very "neat"... it just stops. But, for a young child it's good and the pictures are beautiful (see on the right).

Writing (The Not-Just-Anybody Family): Quite fun... there's not much problems with the technical writing. It is a little light-hearted so if you want a serious story, it might not be the one but younger children might not notice. The ending is a little sudden and there's not a real plot... it's just "some exciting adventures happen but then things go back to normal". Nothing really changes.

From a winged person's perspective... (Unicorn Wings): Very nice. The pictures of pretty winged creatures will make anyone happy, young or old, and the story is very simple and positive... a unicorn wants wings, helps a pegasus and gets his own wings, and flies off to be happy. There's no bad messages or sneaky feeling of "magic has a price"... just beauty and joy. If only all adults' books could be like this....

From a winged person's perspective... (The Not-Just-Anybody Family): The only content about winged people, or people wanting to fly is at the very start... and, it's over quite quickly. Anyone reading the story for this will be disappointed. There are a couple of nice lines, like "he felt the wings were becoming part of him" but it's not the focus of the story.

Trigger warnings (Unicorn Wings): None.

Trigger warnings (The Not-Just-Anybody Family): Trying to tear off the artificial wings.

More thoughts...: Unicorn Wings really doesn't have any problems except that it is very simple... but, for the age who are meant to read it, it's fine. The Not-Just-Anybody Family is not really relevant to the theme. Because one book has a very special audience and one book is not relevant, it's hard to rate them, so, please use the information here to decide ^^
booksofafeather: A book and candlestick, with a feather lying across the pages. (Default)
Short review: A boy who hates change and a girl with a dream of flight work to uncover the secret of their town. An adventure story for children that can get quite silly, but is very thoughtful about people with wings.... it has some great twists on the usual way these stories go. Recommended for winged people, if you can put up with all the silly jokes, and the fact that it is a typical sort of story.

Writing: The writing is quite average... and the jokes are terrible! The story is also not very surprising. There is some good philosophy throughout the book though.

From a winged person's perspective...: On this scale, the book scores almost perfectly! The girl who longs to fly is consistent about her feelings and doesn't regret her changes at all. Everyone thinks she is a bad influence with too much imagination, but she doesn't care how people see her and keeps her dreams to the very end... her feelings are described well too, and many winged people and people who dream of flight will see themselves in her... from the way that she keeps her room to her nervous excitement of someone who holds a secret very close and precious, when it comes to telling someone about her dreams. A number of other characters who experience that longing are shown too. The book avoids some human-centric thinking that it could have fallen into. The people who shy away from dreams of flight because they don't want their children to be "weird" are not supported. There's a lot of education about butterflies also. The only problem is shown in the strange way that the main girl character reacts to some later events.

Trigger warnings: A mention of rips in wings, though it is not detailed. May spoil the story )

More thoughts... )
booksofafeather: A book and candlestick, with a feather lying across the pages. (Default)
Short review: A boy feels disappointed with the new home his family move to, so he tries to get back to the old home using wings from a mysterious wing shop, but it doesn't go as he planned. I loved the pictures in this book... they have a soft delicate watercolour feeling and lots and lots of detail. Sadly the pictures are the only good things about it... the story is very silly and simple, even for children, and the boy doesn't feel any connection to the wings at all. I don't recommend it unless you just want to look at the pictures... they could make some very beautiful art on a wall.

Writing: Sadly not that good... I think that the message of the story is supposed to be "if your family makes you move home, don't worry, you will like the new place anyway. Also don't try anything silly to get back to the old one". For a story about wings it's very anti-wonder... I mean... what child wants to read a story where all it says is, in a really over-the-top and not subtle way, "you will end up liking this thing you really don't like now and you shouldn't misbehave or you will get into trouble"? I think a parent would buy this for their child to try and make them feel better, but it's not so good for the children.

From a winged person's perspective...: Lots of beautiful pictures... but that's it. There aren't any things in this story that a winged person would connect with I don't think... the boy only wants the wings so he can get home. Not because he wants to fly at all. And the book doesn't have much to do with the sense of wonder.

Trigger warnings: None that I can see.

More thoughts...: Heh... it's hard to have more thoughts about this book because it is a really simple book, just like what I said above. A lot of children's picture books come up in my search for flying books somehow. Some of them are good for even adults, but this one is not so much, and it's not even good for younger children. I give it one out of five, but the art is a four out of five.
booksofafeather: A book and candlestick, with a feather lying across the pages. (Default)
Short review: A young ice-skater girl ends up with wings, leading to some strange experiences on the ice rink. It doesn't feel like much of a "winged person" book, more a story of a human girl's trials with unexpected wings, and any actual winged people will probably be disappointed at how human it feels. But it's very well-written as a story... just probably not the type of story most people want.

Writing: I really liked the writing. The plot isn't any big shocking thing, but in terms of just the prose, it was joyful to read, describing things well, but not overwhelming. Just as a story by itself, without the winged person element, I liked it... although since it is a typical kind of story also I probably wouldn't have read it if not for that.

From a winged person's perspective...: It's not really a book about a winged person but a book about a human with wings. Like all the books I've read so far there's a good scene about the joy of flying though. The main character does seem to feel a little affinity for wings, but soon gets tired of the trouble they cause. The wings almost seem to have some small personality of their own, which some winged people might have noticed. The girl tries to be anatomically correct while creating her imaginary wings.

Trigger warnings: Lots of wing injuries, tearing and stabbing. Talk about wing amputation. Use of words like "mutant" in reference to non-humans. A description of how "some types of wings aren't anatomically realistic" which might bother some people; it's a bit species-ist? May spoil the story )

More thoughts... )
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