Journey #2: Quest

Book Information
Rating: Outstanding
Reading/Interest Level: Preschool, Primary, Intermediate
Author: Aaron Becker
Publisher: Candlewick
Year: 2014
ISBN: 9780763665951
Pages: 40

Quest picks up where Journey left off: with the boy and the girl riding their magic-drawn bicycle down the street. But it begins to rain and they find cover under a bridge. Out of the blue, a door appears on the wall of the bridge and a king steps out handing them a map. He is dragged away by the evil emperor’s soldiers and he drops his orange crayon. The boy and girl follow them back through the door and begin a quest to find the other three magical crayons. They journey underwater to the ruins of a grand aquatic city, through a jungle to the ruins of another city, and through the sky an altar-like structure atop a snowy peak, each time narrowly escaping capture. Once they have each of the six crayons the purple bird draws a rainbow across the sky, blinding the enemy soldiers and saving the king and citizens of the castle-city.

Again, Aaron Becker astounds audiences with brilliantly colorful and imaginative illustrations, telling a story in pictures more masterfully than some authors do with words. Becker picks up in Quest immediately where Journey left off, linking the two books seamlessly together. His majestic landscapes and minimalist moments again offset each other and highlight different key moments and scenes. The story beautifully portrays themes of adventure and the power of color and art. This is a fantastic sequel; I am eagerly anticipating the third and final installment, Return, especially given the final scene in which the boy and girl return to find their once-sepia world now entirely transformed. An excellent story and an expert work of art.