February 12, 2017


It's much too pun-ny to say that mother-son team Jeanette and Jonah Winter's latest picture book The Secret Project blew me away, but there's just no other way to put it -- the book is incredible.

Readers are introduced to a world of mystery as they learn that a team of scientists has purchased an all-boy's school in the remote desert of New Mexico to work on what they call the "Gadget." We're never told exactly what the "Gadget" is, but we understand from the text that it's dangerous and so classified that they cannot even call it by its real name. When they finally take their creation deep into the desert to test it, though, the world will never be the same.

The most amazing part of this book is that the reader is just as in the dark about what's happening as the people in the town. Jonah never refers to the a-bomb by it's name, and the text is sparse so that readers want to flip through it quickly to get to the end. Which makes the final illustrations so. Unbelievably. Amazing. I so, so wish I could reveal them here, but I truly feel that seeing them ahead of time would be detrimental to the experience of reading the book for the first time. The illustrations are exceptional, matching the enigmatic text with a noir tint that keeps readers guessing until the end.

The Secret Project published last week from Beach Lane Books!

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