Along a Long Road is the debut children's book from graphic designer, avid cyclist, and frequent cover artist for The New Yorker, Frank Viva - a truly handsome book celebrating the pleasures of pedal powered locomotion.
Originally created as a single, continuous 35-foot long piece of art, the book follows a cyclist along a glossy, vibrant mustard colored road that runs nearly uninterrupted, like the unbroken tracks on a roller coaster, from the front cover to the back, as it winds through birch trees, small storefronts, and seashore scenery.
The clean lines, graceful curves, and simple color palette of Viva's illustrations, combined with the expressive cycling postures of the rider, capture the spirit of a bicycle ride rather than the telling of a story. And the text, which might seem overly minimal on a first read, ultimately translates into the rhythmic ride, cruising down hills, around bends, emerging from a tunnel, or picking up speed on a flat stretch of roadway.
My family also really enjoyed the charming details taking place in the background, especially those of other people enjoying life at a slower pace and waving to the passing cyclist. In fact, our one-year-old was the first person to tip us off to them, raising her arm each time she spied a tiny pedestrian.
Along a Long Road by Frank Viva $11.55
(images: Ben Partridge)
Apartment Therapy Media makes every effort to test and review products fairly and transparently. The views expressed in this review are the personal views of the reviewer and this particular product review was not sponsored or paid for in any way by the manufacturer or an agent working on their behalf. However, the manufacturer did give us the product for testing and review purposes.