A Rare Van Allsburg: The Widow’s Broom

The Widow’s Broom by Chris Van Allsburg. Houghton Mifflin, 1992.

A clever and harrowing tale with a surprise ending. Van Allsburg confronts ignorance in an Aesop’s Fables sort of way. Yet he has a non-traditional twist in that the witch’s broom, normally seen as evil, ends up being good. Illustrations are what one would expect from Van Allsburg, detailed pencil, pointillism, heavy with mood and filled with texture and detail.

His choice to shun color helps the reader notice detail and lends the book a timeless feel.