Best Picture Books of the Year


《天上掉下一头鲸》 (A Falling Whale)
Xi Yuke (text and ill.)
Daylight Publishing House, 2019, China
ISBN 9787501615254

A flurry of sand and rocks brings a loud rumble into the forest. ‘Where does this big noise come from?’, wonder the animals from the forest, ‘If the rain has stopped falling, the ground has stopped shaking, and the sky has stopped collapsing upon us’. Only those among the birds who fly very high and see very far know—It is nothing less than a whale swept into the desert by the tornado.

This picture book relies on the creative reutilisation of one of China’s mos important cultural heritages—blue and white porcelain—as the medium to a poetic story brimming with praise for life and love.

“This is a picture book that beautifully blends classical painting style with modern thinking (…) Through narrative repetition and the creation of a suspenseful atmosphere, the book not only takes the readers into a fantastic world full of innocent joy, but also reveals life as an infinite loop, assigning concise yet rich meanings to itself”.

About the author

Writer and freelance illustrator, Xi Yuke (1993, Northern China) is the author of several children’s novels and picture books. He is a Bingxin Children’s Literature Award winner; A Falling Whale also won the “Bronze and Sunflower” Picture Book Award.

©2019 Daylight Publishing House /©Xi Yuke