Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Otter & Odder

by James Howe, illustrated by Chris Raschka
Candlewick, October 9th, 2012

Otter is looking for food and finds love. They happen to be the same thing-- a fish named Myrtle. The other animals will not tolerate this odd behavior, and Myrtle cannot love an otter who eats her friends and family. With the help of a wise Beaver, will Otter live "happily ever after" with his fish? Or is his tale destined to end "And so their love could never be?" Chris Raschka's abstract crayon and watercolor illustrations exude playfulness, their colors highlighting the emotions of James Howe's wonderful text. 

I was lucky enough to have tea with Chris at Book Expo America and it turns out that the illustrations for this book are actually reproductions from the dummy he submitted. He did some finals for the book, but none were really working. His editor really loved the dummy, though, and decided it was perfect for the final. I'm assuming this is why the illustrations for Otter and Odder are so abstractly geometric and use crayon line instead of ink line.

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