Imagine a Place


If you can imagine a place,
you can go there.

Imagine a place that makes you feel as free as a bird. Imagine a place where getting there is worth whatever it takes. Imagine a place that makes you feel like it's always been your destination. Imagine a place made out of pure imagination.

Imagine a Place is a gorgeous companion to the critically acclaimed Imagine a Night and Imagine a Day, and reminds us that ...

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If you can imagine a place,
you can go there.

Imagine a place that makes you feel as free as a bird. Imagine a place where getting there is worth whatever it takes. Imagine a place that makes you feel like it's always been your destination. Imagine a place made out of pure imagination.

Imagine a Place is a gorgeous companion to the critically acclaimed Imagine a Night and Imagine a Day, and reminds us that imagination is powerful enough to take us anywhere we want to go. And Rob Gonsalves's exquisitely conceived paintings leave you in awe...of his imagination.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Thomson's text asks us to "imagine" many strange and unusual places. In just a few words on one side of each double page spread, she begins, "imagine a place…" It can be "…where you bend and sway, leap and land, right where a story begins" or "…where water is solid…" or "…where your mind opens wider than any walls around you." Each mind-bending suggestion offers Gonsalves a visual challenge. He uses acrylic paints to create highly realistic, almost surreal images that begin with an ordinary scene. Dancers whirl around the ballroom; youngsters play with a dollhouse; a few skiers descend a snowy slope, but in a style reminiscent of Escher, there is a modulation. The snow becomes masses of white tree blossoms; the dollhouse inhabitants become full-size people; billowing curtains become the ball gowns. The challenge is for reasers to figure out the puzzles as they respond to the emotional magic of each scene. As in the author's other "Imagine…" books, readers are encouraged to let their imaginations run wild. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal

Gr 2-6

The creators of Imagine a Night (2003) and Imagine a Day (2005, both S & S) offer another book to ponder and pore over. Readers are again encouraged to stretch their imaginations and question perspective and perception. Painterly acrylic panoramas, supported by lyrical text, are packed with skewed realities. On the title page, an image of a cathedral's interior transmutes into a city skyline as the pointed arches become silhouetted skyscrapers and the mottled stonework of ancient walls, buttressed ceilings, and floor become the rippled surface of the surrounding harbor and stratocumulus clouds. On another spread, the text reads, "Imagine a place.../where water is solid,/light is liquid,/sky a frozen river/flowing under your feet," and the illustration shows skaters gliding across a nighttime river, their lanterns reflecting the moonlight, and snow banks that mirror the clouds above. The sometimes esoteric text and sophisticated art play with literality: houseboats are depicted as brick-and-stone manors in giant skiffs, their verdant lawns enclosed by bow-and-stern-curved fences. This is not magical realism, but shifting realism-magical, to be sure, but not in the high-falutin', metaphysical sense. This is the magic of positive and negative space, of expectation and experimentation, of creativity and conversion. Readers will want to look, look again, discuss, and imagine.-Kathy Krasniewicz, Perrot Library, Old Greenwich, CT

Kirkus Reviews
Having invited young dreamers to Imagine a Night (2003) and Imagine a Day (2005), Thomson poetically guides further travel into a new set of surreal, elaborately detailed interiors and landscapes created by Gonsalves. In M.C. Escher-like transformations and tricks of perspective, stars in a night sky become fireflies or lanterns, a ski slope spreads out to become an orchard of flowering trees, sea waves change seamlessly into mountains, windblown drapes into a dancing couple and gothic arches into skyscrapers. The captions add to the general air of mystery: "Imagine a place . . . / where music sings / in every breeze / of a summer night, / and the wind twirls you / in a waltz / that lasts until dawn." As in the previous gatherings, there's no consistent theme and any narrative structure is vestigial at best. Still, each picture will bring new wonders to armchair sightseers. (Picture book. 7-9)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781416968023
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 9/2/2008
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 363,242
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 11.20 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Sarah L. Thomson's other books include The Dragon's Son, which was named one of the best science fiction, fantasy, and horror books of 2001 by Voice of Youth Advocates; Stars and Stripes; and Imagine a Night. She lives in Maine.

Rob Gonsalves grew up drawing images from his imagination. Before becoming a full-time artist, Mr. Gonsalves worked as an architect. He began exhibiting paintings in Toronto in 1990, and his work is now shown throughout North America and beyond. His picture books are Imagine a Place, Imagine a Night, and Imagine a Day, which was the recipient of the Governor General’s Literary award. He currently lives in Ontario, Canada.

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