Indigo Takes Flight – review

Written by Krista M Lambert

Illustrated by Chris Riddell

Published by Pop Up

Review by Louise Date

A collaboration between Krista M Lambert and Chris Riddell, Indigo Takes Flight talks about the difficulties in admitting that change happens to ourselves and each other. The book is part of 10 Stories to Make a Difference, a collection of ten original illustrated stories on the theme of difference, all aimed at young and progressing readers.

Indigo is a young boy with a secret. A secret that is consuming him slowly, and all his smart attitude isn’t going to make the heaviness in his heart go away. He shies away and guards it while he gets weighed down further and further by the burden of carrying around something he feels he can’t tell anyone. Eventually, as all secrets do, something must surface. Would things be better or worse if he spilled all he’s been carrying?

The verse written by Lambert keeps its rhythm across all the pages and covers difficult subjects in small bitesize chunks that can be digested a little more easily, especially by younger readers. Lambert continuously preaches love of the self, others and acceptance throughout, a theme that has followed her through her writing career. In continuing alternating rhyme this is also a great way to introduce poetry as a source to read, rather than encounter in school, as well as having an important feature: brevity. 

Chris Riddell, as ever, brings a fantastical element throughout the detailed pencil sketches that are overpainted with predominantly red, yellow and blue. Indigo himself is always the brightest character on the page, with a charmingly louche quiff, and the backgrounds have exquisite detail that is Ridell’s trademark.

Indigo Takes Flight is a great short story, and one that is a thought-provoking tool for discussing change, difference and how to accept the people we see in the mirror.

For more 10 Stories to Make a Difference reviews see In Her Element, Match For A Mermaid & Mistaken For A Bear

13th September 2021

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