The doorbell rings. It's a stranger who dropped his jacket outside the window, and he asks the little boy to pick it up for him. However, mother told him not to open the door for strangers. Through the gap of the chained door, the stranger and the little boy start to interact. In the end, the boy gets the jacket successfully and hands it over through the door gap, and says in relief, “I didn't open the door for a stranger!” In the balance between the strangers we distance ourselves from and the goodwill of children, this book let's readers let their guard down and feel warmth.
The 2nd Picture Book Award Winning Books
- Author：Tao Juxiang
- Illustrator：Tao Juxiang
- Publisher：Hsin Yi Publications
- Age Range：5-8
- Publication Date：12-2010
Door ingeniously adopts an intricate part of the contemporary urban life to present how childhood radiates its innocent warmth and goodwill to the world in its unique way, especially in the confining urban living space. While the story is characteristic of contemporary life, the author fully respects the child's self-protecting principle of “never opening the door for strangers,” and turns the frustration in urban life into a special and warm encounter from the perspective of childhood.
The illustration is concise, clean, simple, and aware of the presentation of the child's perspective. In addition to ordinary paints, the application of collage brilliantly blends household materials such as fabrics and yarn in the picture book. Soft-colored fabrics and threads of cotton and linen are used to present walls, clothes, bay windows, cat's eyes, tables, chairs, cactuses, and the like. The naturally cordial atmosphere in daily life that the former brings forth tones down the apathy from modern architectural icons in these images, such as apartment buildings, doors, windows, and fences. The materials of illustration and of content agree visually, which brilliantly echoes the presentation of story and shows the wisdom of the picture book illustration design.
This work attempts to find an actual “gap” for us to communicate and warm each other from the iconic “door” that symbolizes urban detachment. The reality-related hope and despair projected from the “gap” all worth our pensive contemplation.
Fang Weiping (Dean of Children's Cultural Research Institute and Director of Children's Literature Institute, Zhejiang Normal University)
Born as a Libra in 1984, Tao Juxiang graduated with a master's degree in research on illustrative art from the Nanjing University of the Arts. Door has won an award of excellence at the Hsin-Yi Picture Book Awards. Tao contributes her creative works of illustration for children to many magazines, and experiments with various materials, exploring collages and other craft-making. She tirelessly seeks out illustrated books, collects artistic design pictures, picks out pretty clothes, and looks everywhere for inspiration.