ARC Review: The Gargoyle by Zana Fraillon & Ross Morgan

Zephyrus Croft
August 17, 2023

Genre: Picture book

Author: Zana Fraillon

Illustrator: Ross Morgan

Content warnings: N/A

Perfect for when you’re in the mood to: enjoy a simple picture book for all ages.

There’s a gargoyle on the train.

Written by Zana Fraillon and illustrations by Ross Morgan, The Gargoyle is a small picture book detailing a boy’s interaction with a gargoyle on the train. It may be a little weird that a university student is reading and reviewing a children’s book for their university literature society, but I chose this book because of that. Sometimes you need a little colour in your life and this book is a lovely 5-10 minute read to break up the grey of life.

The idea of a gargoyle on a train drew me to this book from the get-go. Placing a symbol of the old, archaic and gothic on the train is a compelling idea and I love it. The art style leans on the grittiness of not only the stone gargoyle, but also the dirty train. While sometimes it blends a little too much, losing the contrast, it’s a nice commentary of how the new becomes the ordinary.

The storyline is rather predictable, but I claim no experience in reviewing children’s books. It’s a cute and colourful story about by-gone eras still existing in the modern world. The ending was beautiful and made me tear up a little!

The Gargoyle is a lovely story. I rate it 4 out of 5 stars.

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