What If One Day...

(Author) (Illustrator)

Product Details

$19.95  $18.55
Enchanted Lion Books
Publish Date
10.3 X 10.3 X 0.6 inches | 1.5 pounds

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About the Author

Bruce Handy is an author, journalist, essayist, critic, humorist, and editor. His first book for young readers, The Happiness of a Dog with a Ball in Its Mouth, was named a Best Children's Book of 2021 by the New York Times. Handy is also the author of Wild Things: The Joy of Reading Children's Literature as an Adult (Simon & Schuster). He has also worked as a writer-editor at Vanity Fair, Time, Esquire, and Spy and has contributed to the New York Times Magazine, the New York Times Book Review, New York, and the New Yorker, as well as other publications that don't have New York in their titles, including The Atlantic and the Wall Street Journal. He currently lives in New York with his wife, the novelist Helen Schulman.

Ashleigh Corrin is a graphic designer by day, illustrator by night, residing in Northern VA with her husband. Her picture book debut, Layla's Happiness, won the 2020 Ezra Jack Keats Award for illustration. Her talent comes from her late grandmother who has inspired Ashleigh to serve people's unique stories with creativity. With her illustrations, Ashleigh hopes to contribute to good laughs, nostalgia, vulnerability, transparency, and seeing the light in ourselves and others.


A New York Times Best Children's Book of 2023! An Academy of American Poets' Featured Fall Book for Young Readers! A Bookstagang Best of 2023 Winner: Best Illustration!

A New York Times Best Children's Book of 2023! "Pondering hypothetical disappearances, Handy's playful text and Corrin's by turns quiet and ebullient pictures create a satisfying rhythm: Precious things (water, the setting sun) are taken from us, and then joyfully returned." -- Jennifer Kraus, New York Times Children's Books Editor
"'What if one day, ' the book begins, breaking the question across a page turn, 'all the birds flew away?' The answers are sometimes poignant: 'Skies would be plainer, ' goes the text, set against a breathtaking expanse of blue, interrupted only by a baseball in flight and a child's arm. And sometimes they're funny: 'Worms could relax, ' our narrator suggests, alongside an illustration of a few chilled-out specimens living their best vermian lives. Just as we're becoming accustomed to this strange, birdless world, a miracle occurs: 'But there are BIRDS!' a double-page spread proclaims. Birds noisily, joyfully sing and flit about. It feels as if they might fly right off the page. Handy's playful text creates a satisfying rhythm--precious things are taken from us and then returned--and he introduces enough surprises to keep it fresh over the book's 80 pages. Corrin's pictures are wonderful, by turns ebullient and intimate." --Author Mac Barnett, for the New York Times
"Engages in the sort of extravagant speculation that children love... An affectionate work that asks what might happen if commonplace things disappeared... every sequence in the book follows the pattern: First there's a hypothetical, then outcomes both prosaic and fantastical, and lastly a friendly reminder that, in fact, there are birds and colors (and water and bugs and people). What if one day you read this book to some 3- to 8-year-olds? I think they'll like it." --Meghan Cox Gurdon, Wall Street Journal

★ "This joyful prose poem by Handy, illustrated with playful, hand-lettered spreads by Corrin, approaches gratitude in an unexpected way: by considering the space that beloved entities might leave behind... Sequences propose and provoke, inquiring about a world absent of a given thing--water, plants, nighttime, insects--and then affirming that thing's empirical existence. Following 'What if one day...// all the colors faded away?' the revelation of a rich reality bursts forth in rainbow shades: 'But there are COLORS!' Upbeat, sunny, and philosophically creative, these lines leave behind a sense of startled freshness that mimics the relief of having a bad dream, and waking up from it." --Publishers Weekly, STARRED REVIEW

★ "What if One Day... is a fun and beautiful 'what if' book... Illustrations are filled with yellows, oranges and browns with rough edges and easy, swooping imaginative imaging... Lots of fun! Recommended for libraries that cater to the younger set." --Pam Watts, Head of Children's Services (Robbins Library, Arlington, MA), for Youth Services Book Review, STARRED REVIEW

"Playful and introspective... There's much humor here too... The text succeeds on many levels; children are subtly prompted to consider the effects of climate change (if there were no more people, nature 'could relax') yet to also ponder our creative contributions ('there would be no more music or art or stories or dancing'). Each scenario concludes with an exuberant statement in the affirmative to enthusiastically remind readers of the delights of their planet: 'But there is WATER!' and 'But there are COLORS!' The pitch-perfect ending invites discovery, asking us to contemplate the 'something' missing 'because it hadn't been dreamt of yet.'" --Horn Book
"Handy's latest picture book explores what might happen should different parts of our world suddenly be erased... Depicting racially diverse characters, Corrin's full, vibrant spreads convey movement and stillness, humor and pensiveness, hitting just the right visual tones." --Kirkus
An Airmail Best! "A delightful new picture book explores one of children's favorite pastimes: speculating about the future... Adults love what-ifs... And as any parent could tell you, kids love hypotheticals, too. What if one day, all the birds flew away? What if, one day, the sun never set? A new picture book written by Bruce Handy and illustrated by Ashleigh Corrin explores those questions, and others, playing through various scenarios while always reminding its young readers to appreciate the now... Gorgeously illustrated." --Airmail