Boat of Dreams
How does a fastidious old man with bowler, umbrella, suspenders, and a Salvador Dali mustache come to live on a deserted island?
How does a boy come to live alone in an apparently deserted city? Are they separated by distance or by time? Does the man dream the boy? Does the boy dream the man? Is a blank paper in a floating bottle an invitation to imagine our futures? Is the man’s flying boat an encouragement to the boy to dream? Are the man and the boy the same person―the boy dwelling in the man’s memory? Is a message in a bottle the earthbound dreams of the elderly? Is a flying boat the unconstrained dreams of the young?
This wordless, many-layered 80-page picture book invites all these interpretations and more. The intricately detailed illustrations reveal new wonders with each viewing. Neither children nor adults will ever tire of this wonderful testament to imagination, memory, and dreams. Color throughout.
About the Author
Rogério Coelho has illustrated more than 100 books in Brazil, where he lives, and he won Brazil’s top literary prize, the Jabuti Award, in 2012. He illustrates for children’s magazines internationally, including Storytime Magazine in England. He conceived Boat of Dreams while spending a few winter days with his children in a coastal Brazilian village, surrounded by a beautiful but gray landscape. The boy and the man appeared instantly in his imagination, but it took him almost seven years to complete the book. “The story became much bigger than my first concept, but I could not find ways to tell it otherwise,” he says. “When walking toward the future I never forget to look back, and I always see a boy who loves to draw. And when I look ahead, I can’t see another picture than this.”