In Blossom

On a sun twinkling day, on a park bench surrounded by swaying, whispering cherry blossom trees, Cat sings a song as she sits to eat her sushi picnic. She is joined by Dog, who sits beside her to read a book. They sit in polite, respectful silence until a single petal, blown by the breeze, unexpectedly brings them together.

This simple story of enjoying the spring and finding a friend is visually stunning. The colours are muted and the delicately drawn trees seem almost to move on their white backgrounds. Each blossom and leaf, each whorl of tree bark is exquisitely rendered, and the use of white space sets the pace and focuses the eye on the canine and feline protagonists – although I’m not sure ‘protagonist’ is the correct description for them – both Dog and Cat seem to be just passing through, while the ancient blossom trees endure.

A calm, meditative treat for wind-down time, this book is a serene and tranquil antidote to all the primary-coloured, crash-bang-wallop titles that usually stuff children’s book shelves.