The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore


I’ve just watched, on YouTube, the animated short film that won William Joyce an Academy Award for the Best Animated Short Film – well, no wonder! As much as you need to get a copy of this book, you have to promise to watch this short film. If you have an iPad, you can purchase the app for $4.99. I haven’t purchased it yet, but it looks like it could be a lot of fun.

Anyway…the book is pretty special, too. Written by William Joyce and illustrated by Joe Bluhm, every page is a sheer delight. Morris loves books, really loves them. But one day a terrible storm comes  and blows away…not just the books but the very words off the pages! Beside himself, when the storm is over, Morris begins to walk with no real destination in mind, so bereft is he that his books are gone. All is not lost, though, as he spies a beautiful woman flying with a clutch of balloons  books overhead. One book stays behind and beckons Morris to follow him. Morris finds a beautiful house filled with…books, where he happily spends the rest of his life caring for the books and sharing them with others. Morris spends part of his day writing his own story and one day he comes to the end of his book and says good-bye to his life long friends. But, soon a little girl appears and she picks up Morris’s own story and begins to read… and “the story ends as it began, with the opening of a book.”

Let’s be clear…at the end of the book Morris writes his last chapter, bids his book companions a fond farewell and is carried away by a flock of books. Morris passes on to the great book heaven in the sky. While I think the book and movie handle this tastefully, you will have to judge for yourself.

I, for one, have a copy of the book which I plan to share with my own Little Darling. I am going to buy the iPad app because I am just that curious and want to try it myself. Read it, I don’t think you will be disappointed.

You might want to check out Mr. Joyce’s other books, here.

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