When Leah and Alan awaken in an enchanted forest, they have only each other and their wits to guide them. In a world full of pet bees and giant rabbits, they befriend foppish lions and stone frogs. Learning to overcome danger, they find their way home--and their independence.
"*Starred Review* Winsor McCay was a comics pioneer whose early experimentation with the form, as in his surrealist Little Nemo in Slumberland, nearly predated the form itself. McCay's spirit, along with his dream-inspired imagery, lives on through Nytra, whose remarkable debut taps into the same unearthly environment with a similarly enchanting effect. What's more dreamlike than waking up in a strange forest, after all? Or following a path suggested by a good-natured stone frog? This is the plight of young Leah and her brother, Alan, who pursue the path and come across a host of distorted but familiar creatures. While much of the sensibility comes from McCay, these creatures and the ethereal menace they present evoke the mannered Victorian fantasy of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, as do the way the characters speak and relate. The extraordinarily delicate and fine-lined art combines the look and tone of these two sources and incorporates touches of manga aesthetic so that, like the story itself, it merges timeless narrative elements to craft something wonderfully innovative. TOON took a chance on a brand-new talent to create the first of their ever so slightly more mature graphic-novel line, and it's paid off with a smashing success.--Karp, Jesse Copyright 2010 Booklist"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review:
"A young brother and sister in their nightclothes (Alan and Leah) awake without explanation in a magical land of illogic and misrule from which they must struggle to find their way home. Is this another artist drinking from the well of Lewis Carroll and J.M. Barrie? Two factors keep Nytra's book from falling into this seen-it trap of calculated whimsy and immaturity-by-choice. First, the intricate flowerings and soulfully etched forest backgrounds of the art make the black-and-white pages sing as though they were drawn in a rainbow of colors. Second, the unhurried and delicately paced narrative, which proceeds from the moment Alan and Leah awake in a storybook forest of wonder and terror and are directed in the first stage of their journey by a large talking stone toad. After that, their catalogue of amazement ranges from giant pet bees with the ability to steal one's words to a grouping of fey, upright, talking lions in the gear and demeanor of Versailles-ready dandies. To stick the landing, Nytra's serene ending manages to be worthy of its glorious beginning. His cavalcade of dreamscapes is a rich and beguiling experience that deserves multiple immersions. Ages 8-up. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved