In Marie Susan Swanson's The House in the Night, we learn about a house with a light burning inside. Inside the house is a child reading the book. As they read the book, they fall into the story and experience a world of stars and light, before returning back to the house in the night. The illustrations of this story are done in simple black and white with touches of yellow to illustrate objects like stars and lights. The illustrator creates depth with it's limited color scheme by incorporating textures from techniques like cross hatching. Another unique aspect of the illustrations is it's done with mostly white on black, instead of black on white, meaning the illustrator is mainly working with negative space, which she does quite well. The story is comforting and calm, while adventurous at the same time, as the girl is able to experience flight on the back of a giant bird by using her imagination and a picture book. In the meantime, the girl is surrounded by comforting elements like pet cats and teddy bears. The dreamlike quality of the book fits the nighttime setting as well. The lights, both in the house, and in the story, as accented by the read color, create a feeling of safety even in the dark.
Recommended Grade level- Preschool
Notes- This story is appropriate for a bedtime story, especially with children that may be afraid of the dark and use a nightlight to sleep.
(This book was reviewed for a class)