by Debbie Vance
The illustrated children’s book The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore by William Joyce, illustrated by William Joyce and Joe Bluhm, is a classic tale about the power of story. Morris Lessmore is an ordered man who keeps a tidy account of his life. One day, a terrible storm comes and disrupts his life, scattering even the words of his story. Just when all hope seems lost, a beautiful woman floats by in the sky, carried by a fleet of flying books. She presents Morris with a living book, who leads him to a house “where many books apparently ‘nested.'” And so begins Morris’s life among the books, where he learns that every story matters, every story lives.
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore has also been made into an Academy Award winning short film. (One of my very favorites.)
While we’re on the subject of short films, check out Adam and Dog, a beautifully crafted short about the friendship between man and dog that follows the creation and expulsion story of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden.
And, last but not least, the beautiful La Luna, an unforgettable tale of cross-generational relationships–grandfather, father, son–what carries on, and what is invented.