BookDragon Books for the Diverse Reader

What Do You Do With an Idea? by Kobi Yamada, illustrated by Mae Besom

What Do You Do With an IdeaIt begins in mostly black and white … and eventually bursts into stupendously vibrant color, full of gleeful energy and infectious determination. You just can’t keep a good idea down, especially if you follow this whimsical primer by inspirational author Kobi Yamada (who “thinks he just might be the luckiest person on the planet,” his back flap bio glows) and his happy-inducing illustrator Mae Besom.

Meet the young protagonist (s/he is oh so cleverly drawn with enough androgynous ambiguity that you can decide the gender for yourself) on the right, as s/he greets his/her idea, there on the left. That the idea resembles a golden egg says much about its potential. But our hero/ine is not quite sure what s/he’s birthed: the expression on the opening page inside is actually slightly different – rather than the cover’s smile-in-the-making, the first page captures a quizzical uncertainty with just the change of a single line. S/he wonders indeed, “‘What do you do with an idea?'”

Unsure and confused at first, s/he tries ignoring what is “strange and fragile.” And yet “there was something magical about my idea. I had to admit, I felt better and happier when it was around.” And so the idea grows with its maker’s attentions, refusing to shrink away even when too many dismiss it as “different, and weird, and maybe a little crazy.” Our hero/ine knows better, creating “a place where it could be safe to dream.”

With encouragement, both the idea and its maker grow, fed by imagination, amazement, and tenacity … until our hero/ine finds just the right answer to “what you do with an idea …” We should all be so joyfully motivated! Here’s the enchanting exhilaration to get you started!

Readers: Children

Published: 2014


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