April 1, 2021


We Became Jaguars by Dave Eggers and Woodrow White demonstrates the power of storytelling to bring people together.

Grandma comes to visit and her grandson is nervous. They've only met one time before, and his parents have left them alone while they're away. In an effort to break the ice, Grandma gets down on the ground and starts growling like a jaguar, and it doesn't take long for the young boy to join in. They bond as jaguars, climbing mountains, drinking from the river, and running just for the fun of it, until it comes time for them to return to reality...mostly.

White used gouache and acrylics to create the illustrations, and he is incredible at capturing movement -- there's energy jumping off of every page, The most incredible part of this book, though, has to be the moment when grandmother and child transition from persons to jaguars. White uses a gatefold to show the magical transition, and the effect of having both pages open outward to show the two fully-transformed jaguars is breath-taking. I also love that we never see them transform back into people!

We Became Jaguars published earlier this week from Chronicle Books!

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1 comment:

  1. I love this book--especially now that I am a new grandmother! Thanks for the terrific review.