Different Strokes for Different Blokes! Digby Differs by Miriam Koch
DIGBY WAS A SHEEP--A VERY SPECIAL SHEEP.
AND IT MADE HIM FEEL VERY ALONE.
Digby, with his two-toned fleece, certainly stands out in a flock. His stylized red stripes certainly make him a singular sheep. So when a red-striped hot-air balloon sails by in the sky, Dixby takes it for a omen and follows it over hill and dale.
Digby takes heart when he comes to a town. There's an awning with wide red stripes a-la-Digby, although it doesn't seem to offer him much of a welcome Similarly, a warning sign, a trash can, and and unrecycled red-and-white paper cup share his colors but offer no companionship. But when a streamlined train with a red stripe along the side of its cars pulls into the station, Digby decides to give it a try and hitches a ride in the baggage car loaded with red-striped boxes of mail.
"I WONDER WHERE THESE BOXES ARE GOING," HE SAID.
When Digby wakes up, he finds his box on the doorstep of a lighthouse on the coast, a red-and-white striped lighthouse. Maybe he has found a place to fit in at last.
Miriam Koch's Digby Differs (Peter Pauper Press, 2013), like its died-in-the-wool hero, is definitely a different book, squat and long, designed to show off the various horizontal landscapes through which Digby follows his fortunes. Koch's light-touch artwork is charmingly executed, the naive but hopeful Digby following his own version of color coding. Bright touches of Digby red draw him across the the linear landscape, from hillside pasture to cityscape to sandy seaside shore, all invitingly drawn and colored with what the New York Times reviewer calls "... hues a catalog copywriter might describe as oxblood, flan and café au lait, with a mushy-pea green added for the vitamins." Definitely a different drummer book.