High in the Clouds by Paul McCartney (and children’s author Philip Ardagh) is a 96 page children’s book originally released on October 3, 2005. The artwork is by award winning animator Geoff Dunbar who is the artist behind Paul McCartney’s Rupert and the Frog Chorus video and the song “We All Stand Together” (see video below).
This book is being made into a movie and is currently in pre-production according to IMDb.
In 2013, it was reported that an animated feature film adaptation of the book was in development by producers Michael Lynne and Bob Shaye through their Unique Features banner and RGH Entertainment. Tony Bancroft was set to direct the film, written by Josh Klausner, with Paul McCartney set to compose several original songs. The film was optioned by Gaumont.
This story is about a squirrel named Wirral (yeah, just like the town across the River Mersey where Cynthia Lennon grew up), who, after his forest home of Woodland is destroyed and his mother is killed by bulldozers, is in search of the island paradise of Animalia where all the animals live free and in peace. A few other notes of interest:
- The word FREEDOM appears in all caps which I took as a tribute to Sir Paul’s song “Freedom” that he released after the 9/11 attacks.
- The words “We all stand together” also appears in the text. I would assume another homage. This time to the song of the same name that McCartney wrote for The Frog Chorus (video below)
- The bad guy in this book (actually a woman) is named Gretsch! Well, that won’t win him any points with the guitar company now, will it? LOL
- There are animals of all sizes living on Animalia. From very large elephants and rhinos to very small….beetles!
This book is absolutely beautifully illustrated. So much so that I had wished there were more pictures to go along with the story. The story itself is good and one can imagine a child of 6 to 9 years of age (recommended age) reading this book to them self. I think my only concern would be the title “High in the Clouds”. Though there is a character in the book named Froggo who travels by hot air balloon, most of the story is on the ground, making me wonder if this is just another one of Sir Paul’s marijuana references. I mean this is the guy that wrote the love song “Gotta to Get You into My Life” about weed! And for that reason…
I rate this book, 3 out of 4 Beetles!