★★★★ The Siblings and Other Stories is a lavishly illustrated book by author Gyuszi Sütő and illustrator Liza Danila which contains two stories. The first tale, “The Story of an Apple,” centers around a conversation between a boy and his father. The boy is sick in bed and his father urges him to eat an apple for its nutrients. At first the boy refuses, calling the healthy snack boring. However, the father shares a story about the tree the apple grew on and how it came to be picked. The bedside tale engrosses the boy and he ends up devouring the fruit. The second story, “The Siblings,” follows the adventures of Zack and Kim. Unbeknownst to their parents, this brother and sister team set out to find a rare camera to complete their grandfather’s collection. Determined in their quest, Zack and Kim find themselves biking all over town and they encounter a handful of interesting characters along the way.
Sütő and Danila make a strong team; together they’ve given readers a vibrant book, brimming with emotion, that is both entertaining and moving. The two tales that make up the book are memorable and are certain to spark anyone’s imagination, and the book’s illustrations are pattern-rich and whimsical, which serves to draw readers further into the book’s themes of wonder and gratitude. The art and stories have a timeless feel to them, putting the book squarely between genres (not quite children’s fiction, not quite adult fiction) and creating something greater than the sum of its parts. Hopefully this is just the beginning of stories from Sütő and Danila.