Book Review – The Dark

“Lazlo was afraid of the dark.”

Lemony Snicket
Written by Lemony Snicket, illustrated by Jon Klassen. Published by orchard.

This is one of my new all time favourite picture books. I know that’s a big call, but I’m going to stand by it.

As a child, I was terrified of the dark. To be honest, still not much of a fan. I may be 26 years old but every time I turn off the light before bed – I run and jump into bed before the demon beneath my bed won’t have time to grab my legs. And you can bet I won’t be sticking my foot out from under the blanket, no sir, no thank you.

This books sums up that fear that at least most children have and I’m sure a few adults too. The story follows a little boy Lazlo as he faces the dark, and is aimed

“The dark lived in the same house as Laszlo, a big place with a creaky roof, smooth, cold windows and several flights of stairs.”

This whole book is just genius. It is dark and creepy and wonderful. The dark isn’t just another adjective in this book – it is a whole character that has it’s own voice and personality. Even reading lines from the darks perspective I felt a little chill up my spine and when reading it aloud to Sonny I immediate changed my voice to be a slow and creepy.

But in the morning the dark would be back in the basement, where it belonged. Laszlo would peek at the dark every morning. “Hi,” he would say. “Hi, dark.”

The dialogue in this is just so good, it really makes it stand out from other picture books for sure. Just utterly brilliant.

Lemony Snicket is highly respected in my household, with the original A Series of Unfortunate Events movie constantly being played on re run. So I was super excited to read this book, and I am glad I was not disappointed.

The illustrations are also incredible – I’m becoming quite the Jon Klassen fan girl. His illustrations are clever and unique. I love the way the illustrations reflect the mood of the story with the use of dark colours and blackness sometimes taking up entire pages.

I got this banged up much loved copy of the book from the library, but will be going out and ordering my own for sure. I can’t recommend this book enough and feel it has raised the bar for how I will review all other picture books.

To read more about Lemony Snicket, click here. For more on Jon Klassen work, check out his website here.


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