by Mitsumasa Anno
originally published in Japan in 1977
New York: William Collins, 1978
Interests: art, history, country life, travel, puzzles
A traveller rows a small boat ashore, purchases a horse, and rides through a Northern European landscape.
The first of many ‘Journey’ books by Anno, this is a wordless picture book, a book for long, studied contemplation. Each full-page spread features a panoramic view of a landscape with the small figure of Anno on a horse riding through it. The farms, villages and towns he passes are full of people at work and play. For the reader who looks deeper, there are little narratives that play out over several pages, along with glimpses of storybook and fairy tale characters, and scenes from famous paintings.
It’s hard to say at what age a child might pick this up. It’s suitable for all ages, but would appeal most to anyone who will take some time to pore over the illustrations. So densely illustrated it should yield surprises even after repeated ‘readings’.