You know that saying, “You can’t choose your family”? Well, Micah Player’s rainbow bright picture book, Chloe, instead, might just have been inspired by this truism. It’s a kid’s eye view of the ups and downs of life with a sibling, a sibling who is nothing like you and more often than not, drives you bananas.
“I was hoping for a little sister who was just like me. But I got Chloe, instead.” So says the piano-playing narrator of this cute-as-a-button portrait of sisterhood, in its earliest stage. Big sister enjoys music, reading, and colouring. Chloe is simply crazy. She is chaos on two feet. Will these girls ever find common ground and figure out how to have fun, in spite of their differences? Of course they will, with the help of a little patience, some music, and groovy silly dancing, because isn’t that how it works in most families?
Adorable trailer alert:
I’m sure kids will be drawn to the bold style of Player’s artwork. The uncluttered layout of most of the pages really foregrounds the character’ facial expressions and interaction with each other. Chloe and her sister seem just as sassy and captivating as the candy coloured hues that pop on every page. Surprisingly, while the palette here is super bright, the whole package comes across as quite understated in its design, exactly what you’d expected from an illustrator who is also a seasoned graphic designer.
Chloe, instead is for hip sisters everywhere. Just tie a ribbon around it. When you’ve got a cover that snazzy, there’s no wrapping paper required.
Chloe, instead is published by Chronicle Books.