Quietly beautiful, stunning, poignant, all of the above. Town Is by the Sea is a book of contrasts, of light, dark, above, beneath, land and sea. It is so many things. Its visual and written narrative are incredibly thoughtful and Sydney Smith portrays the changing light throughout the day authentically and eloquently. And if you look at his seascapes long enough, you’ll hear the ocean, quiet but vast. Far and away one of the best picture books we’ve read this year.