Hardcover, 48 pages
Published June 2nd 2015 by Disney-Hyperion (first published May 19th 2015)
This picture book about the power of friendship by new talent Cale Atkinson is brought to life by charming, dynamic illustrations.
Debut author Cale Atkinson introduces us to Tim, a young boy who happens to meet Sam, a whale who has lost his way. As Tim and Sam figure out how to get Sam back to the sea, Atkinson shows how friendships are formed, and how their trust in each other that helps them do extraordinary things.
Atkinson tells a lovely story in very few words, using short, cheerful sentences to emphasize Tim's initial loneliness, and his utter joy in meeting Sam, a kindered spirit. Their mutual realization that they truly see each other is heartwarming, and a great reminder on how having a friend who truly understands you, can inspire great ideas and even greater adventures.
Atkinson's storytelling is beautifully accentuated by his bold and detailed illustrations. The bright tangerine tones help dually emphasize Tim's optimistic personality, and also help brings warmth to Tim and Sam's friendship. Atkinson also makes great use of double-page spreads, helping to emphasize Sam's size, and the magnificient scope of Tim and Sam's time together.
Of special note: As author Caryn Caldwell points out in her review, younger readers may be alarmed by an almost-drowning scene in the final pages of the book. Adults should be aware, and also feel ready to talk about the scene.
Cale Atkinson has a definite hit on his hands with this book, and I absolutely can't wait to see what he comes up with next. Highly recommend to all readers, full stop.