Albert and his mum and dad go walking one day in the mountains. Unfortunately, Albert slips and disappears over the edge of a cliff; his parents are very upset. Albert is lucky though--the Cloud Children see his fall and speak the magic words ("They either said, Fumble gralley goggle ho hee", or "Teetum waggle bari se nee", or was it "Gargle giggle fiddle num dee?") that make Albert light enough to float among the clouds, with them. Albert sleeps that night drifting in the sky. The next day, Albert and the Cloud Children have lots of fun: jumping off tall clouds, making as much noise as they can in the thunderstorm, swimming in the rain, painting pictures next to the rainbow and walking on the filmy traces left by passing aircraft. When Albert wants to go home again, the Queen arranges for his cloud to drift near his home, and for him to gently float down--but not before they all have feasted with the Man in the Moon!
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(295mm x 255mm x 5mm)
Publisher: Random House Children's Publishers UK
Country of Publication:
US Kirkus Review »
A typical Burningham dreamer falls from the land of childhood into Cloudland; when he returns home he forever after longs for another taste of the land beyond. When Albert freefalls off a cliff while hiking with his parents, he's rescued by cloud children who see him falling and utter one of several delightfully nonsensical incantations. In a twist on the angels-bowling-in-heaven explanation for natural wonders, the cloud children play jumping games, make as much noise as they can when it thunders, dance with lightning, and paint with rainbows as inspiration. Burningham's characteristically breezy pen-and-ink illustrations are airborne here. Loosely sketched, cut-out figures of children are superimposed against actual full-color photographs of magnificent cloudscapes, sky scenes, and sunsets, ingeniously - and appropriately - juxtaposing realism with imagination. A matter-of-fact tone and economy of words, in combination with whimsical illustrations, create a buoyant, high-flying fantasy greater than the sum of its parts. Winsomely sure-footed. (Kirkus Reviews)
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Author Biography - John Burningham
John Burningham is one of the most prestigious and well-loved illustrators working in the children's book field today. Trained at the Central School of Art, his first picture book, Borka was published in 1963. He has won the Kate Greenaway Award twice for Borka and Mr Gumpy's Outing, and has enjoyed a distinguished career spanning over 45 years.