Dan Santat’s ‘Are We There Yet?’ is a fantastic romp

Jennifer M. Pang August 12, 2017 0

Are We There Yet? is a fantastic romp through a boring car trip that only Dan Santat could deliver. Santat is a prolific illustrator and his debut as both writer and illustrator, The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend, won the 2015 Caldecott Medal.  Once again in Are We There Yet?, Santat demonstrates the beauty and wonder that is contained in our imagination.

The main character is a boy who taking a long car trip to his grandmother’s birthday party. The narrator prompts the reader to imagine fantastic scenarios: pirates, astronauts, dinosaurs make appearances, with full transformations of the family in the car. A great book for fidgety children, this book is read upside-down for the middle part. The rather mundane advice is accompanied by an ever-changing, colorful world. As a background detail, the family appears to be interracial; creating a nice, subliminal representation for hapa kids. Highly suggested, and worthy of being another modern classic like Beekle.

Are We There Yet? is an amazing adventure for families to take together. Highly suggested for kids starting to read and/or who are reluctant to sit down, ages 4-6. Note: uses the word “butt” once.

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