Gerstein’s beautiful paintings and words take you on a journey following young French aerialist, Philippe Petit. This is just truly a gorgeous book, foldout pages emphasize the great distance between the towers and the height of the buildings. I almost think the text is just an added clarification because the pictures can almost tell the story on their own. My only real issue is that I think it is a wonderful story all on it’s own of a young man who was willing to risk everything to do what he dreamed, and so the last 3 pages which cover the fact that the towers are gone now seem tacked on. The bulk of the book could have been created any time since the performance in 1974 so I felt like those pages were more of a desperate attempt to make it more current and to ride on the coat tails of so many 9/11 stories when it was fine standing on it’s own.
Caldecott Winner 2004