Publication Date: September 7, 2021
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Ages 6 to 8, Grades 1 to 5
“Wowww!”—– Raina Telgemeier, #1 NY Times, #1 USA Today, #1 Publishers Weekly bestselling author/illustrator“Herz presents a provocative and unique look at the lifecycle and benefits of smoke throughout the millennia. Lopez’s multimedia artwork further illuminates the ethereal nature of smoke as it drifts and dances across the page.”- John Rocco, NY Times Bestselling author and Caldecott Honoree
"A fascinating, refreshing, and beautifully atmospheric take on something often taken for granted. I’ll never look at smoke the same way again!"- Matthew Cordell, Caldecott Medalist author/illustrator
“I Am Smoke is an absolutely beautiful book, where smoke is both poetry and science. Readers will rest, float, and dance along with smoke’s quiet power across time and traditions. I have lingered over its pages more than once, and I’m sure young readers will, too.”- NY Times Bestselling author Doreen CroninSmoke itself acts as narrator, telling us how it has served humankind since prehistoric times in signaling, beekeeping, curing and flavoring food, religious rites, fumigating insects, and myriad other ways.
Smoke speaks in mesmerizing riddles: “I lack a mouth, but I can speak…. I lack hands, but I can push out unwanted guests…. I’m gentler than a feather, but I can cause harm…". This rhythmically powerful narration is complemented by illustrations in which swirling smoke was captured on art paper held over smoky candle flames, and the dancing smoke textures were then deepened and elaborated with watercolors and Photoshop finishes. With this unique method, Merce López “let the smoke decide how the idea I had in mind would dance with it, giving freedom to the images.”The resulting illustrations are astounding, and they resonate with the otherworldly text.
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