Think of this book as a lifesaver of sorts.
“Land of NOW” is without a doubt the most alluring children’s book yet from the dynamic duo of American writer Katie Mullaly and British artist Toby Allen. The fourth offering under Mullaly’s Faceted Press imprint, this magical foray into the concept of being here now is not a subject for the feint of heart. In fact, this writer forecasts a wide demographic of interest for this message of living in the moment, and predicts a readership age range from 9 to 99, for we could all use the lessons to be learned upon these masterfully crafted pages.
From the opening line of “Land of NOW”, Mullaly spins her special brand of swinging, rhyming prose, enticing readers to join her exploration of what happens to a person’s brain when it is befuddled, muddled or in chaos. And before anyone suggests this is inappropriate material to read to children; think again, as we shovel our collective ways through the daily hodge-podge of confusing, powerful images and sounds flooding across our media devices. I think it is fair to say that few current events are properly explained to children, so think of this book as a lifesaver of sorts. These are baffling, mysterious times for many folks, especially our tiniest citizens, and this fun and artful book makes this journey through the Land of NOW even more positive.
Anyone can appreciate having the benefits of a guide through unknown territory, and what better place to have a chaperon than through problem areas of our brain. Everyone has those moments of confusing, mental mayhem, when your head feels like it will burst. But with a few well explained techniques, any of us may work our way back to clarity, peace and calm. For a little person, Mullaly’s singular take on the importance of relying on one’s own ability to reach that serene place, is a treasure of untold value.
While the poetic prose of author Katie Mullaly may be fairly advanced for some, because of the beautiful, comforting and approachable illustrations of Toby Allen, the complex set of messages are served on a platter dressed for visual enjoyment in its finest forms. Even the villains are cute in this book. And what a balancing act these two creators have managed to produce, for many others have tried what Mullaly and Allen succeed in doing so handsomely; to entertain while educating children about a matter so often ignored and yet so critical for our kids to understand.
This is a must-read book for almost all ages (9-99), and one I highly recommend for the urban family especially, for now more than ever our children are overwhelmed with complicated and contradictory messages flooding their soft, impressionable brains. In this book, kids and parents are given powerful tools to fend off those mental monsters, and through the wondrous tradition of storytelling, utilize simple, logical steps to return to our peaceful, natural mental state. Thank you Katie Mullaly and Toby Allen for this magnum opus for our loved ones.
Gregory B. Gallagher is an award‐winning filmmaker, travel writer, and one of the original Canadian writers of the Sesame Street TV Show. He lives on an island in French Canada with his wife, artist Linda Hart.