Knophy is an unforgettable and relatable character who will likely go on many more adventures.
Nadia Ghafour’s Knophy, a fun, quick picture-book read, follows Knophy, an invisible being who is not noticed by anyone—humans, animals, and even flies cannot see him—and feels lost in the world. Knophy features an easy-to-read story line for children and includes fresh, colorful illustrations. The depiction of Knophy himself is fun and unique, and the overall story resonates with all ages.
The book opens with Knophy having lived in an old house for many years, though none of its inhabitants realize he’s there. He is small enough to travel through the house like a ball of dust, which makes him even more unnoticeable. The beginning emphasizes Knophy’s isolation and despair, creating sympathy for his character and situation. Knophy is a likable and root-worthy character, especially during his journey to discover his importance in the world.
The depictions of Knophy’s different emotions, from sad to anguished to joyful, make him a rounded, multidimensional character. The illustrations, especially those conveying Knophy’s emotions, help portray Knophy’s evolution as a character. By the end, the image of Knophy reflected in a mirror perfectly summarizes the character’s growth: from an isolated, unknown being to a recognized, important one.
The writing style is clean and easy to follow, and Knophy’s adventures and mishaps are engaging and often humorous. Despite these moments, further development of the conflict could have resulted in a more satisfying ending. Knophy’s change in character, otherwise, can seem a bit quick.
Ghafour’s Knophy is very much a story of self-discovery. Knophy is an unforgettable and relatable character who will likely go on many more adventures.
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