In Search of the Light is Leonard's first children's book.
IN SEARCH OF THE LIGHT is a 1,500-word children’s picture book for ages 4 and up. The rhyming dialogue tells an enchanting story of animals in the meadow who experience a sudden eclipse of the sun. Not knowing what has happened, they believe that somehow the sun has lost its way, and they are concerned that it could mean the end of light.
Considering the situation to be most urgent, they form an expedition of four who journey to unknown places in search of the source of the light...
...The story opens children and adults to a magical and childlike world of innocence where a beautiful and simple message of truth is revealed. This uplifting, suspenseful adventure invites an independence of spirit, encouraging the return to love and oneness and strength within.
IN SEARCH OF THE LIGHT is beautifully illustrated by Italian illustrator, Fiammetta Dogi, who lives in Florence.
The first thing I noticed, and so will you, is the beauty of Fiammetta Dogi's illustrations. They are brilliant in colour and the quality of A Conscious Living Publication's product highlights Ms. Dogi's talent.
As you know, we all read differently and therefore mix differently with books. I'm struggling with not mixing with what I believe is the author's message versus how the story reads...which for me is a bit confusing. With that in mind, I would like to try and move away from that aspect and just talk about the adventure.
I enjoyed the beginning and the move into the dark forest. History is filled with stories on how humans have tried to explain a solar eclipse. The end of the world, the god(s) of the universe being angered, the fear of the unknown. I found this telling straightforward enough for any child to understand and follow the story's characters.
Chapter three lost me. The author's message is too vague and too much a left turn. Again, only my opinion, but one thing I believe we forget when writing for children...keep it simple, keep being straightforward with them. I'm also realizing my editor's hat in pushing through to override my reviewer's hat. So, allow me to bring in my split personality here, for just a moment:
Reviewer...message was lost...simple story, sidetrack on adventure, wish it was more because I was enjoying the pictures being painted. The idea of being different could have been explored.
Editor...needed more explanation to lead readers in the direction intended.
The ending, I'm unsure. For me...and whether it's the reviewer/reader in me or the editor, it's the same feeling...I miss how it ties up with the beginning, a solar eclipse. I keep wishing the sun had come alive as a character to help the main characters.
I've always said that because I don't mix with a book doesn't mean you won't. "In Search of the Light" will visually grab any reader. If kept lighthearted in the reading, younger children should enjoy the adventure paired with the illustrations.