Book Review – Journey by Aaron Becker



Journey is a book with a difference, in that it is a wordless picture story book. There is certainly a great story to be told and that story will be slightly different for everyone who reads it.


Journey  begins with the image of a young girl, obviously bored and trying to find something to do and someone to spend time with. Her family are all busy so she winds up alone in her room, a little dejected. She then spies a red marker lying on the floor and she proceeds to draw a door on her wall. The door magically becomes real and she finds herself going on a wonderful journey through different lands and places. The marker is used to ‘draw’ a boat, a hot air balloon, a magic carpet and finally, part of a bike to ride off with a new friend.

Why I love it:

There are so many things to love about Journey. I love that every time I read it, I notice something more. I love that it forces me to look at the detail and the storytelling in the illustrations, when often I focus only on the text. I love that both my daughter and my (as yet non-reading) son can read it and let their imaginations run wild as they each tell a different tale. I love listening to the ideas my kids come up with throughout the pages and I love observing what it is they notice about the illustrations and the story. I love that they too, find more and more in Journey each reading.

Themes to discuss with your child:

There are many themes throughout Journey. Some of the more prominent ones for me are:

  • Loneliness (how it feels to be lonely and what you can do when you are lonely)
  • Boredom (again how it feels and what you can do)
  • Imagination (how the reader’s imagination is engaged in order to tell the story)
  • Friendship (between the girl and the boy – who is first seen at the beginning and then reappears at the end)
  • Travel and freedom
  • Independence and being brave
  • Magic and wonder

Questions to ask your child:

Before reading:
  • What do you think this book might be about?
  • Do you think this is a fiction book (a story) or a non-fiction book (facts)?
  • List 5 things you notice on the front cover.
  • Do you think the girl has been to the castle before? What makes you think this?
  • What do you think will be inside the castle?
After reading:
  • How did you feel about the book not having any words?
  • Did you enjoy the story telling?
  • Have a look back at the very first page; who can we see on the left-hand side?
  • Why do you think the men were trying to capture the bird?
  • Why do you think the girl stole the bird?
  • What happened to the girl after she let the bird fly free?
  • What did the bird then do for her?
  • Where do you think the bird came from in the first place?
  • What do you think is the meaning of the bike having one purple wheel and one red wheel?
  • How does this book make you feel?

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