New from the creator of Skunk on a String comes Wallpaper, a wordless picture book in Thao Lam’s signature paper collage style. It tells the story of a young girl whose family moves into a new house. Outside, she can hear other kids playing, but she’s too shy to say hello. So she picks at the old wallpaper in her room—revealing an entryway to a fantastic imaginary adventure world behind the walls.

There, she runs between the vibrant and varied environments—surrounded by birds, swimming in a frog pond, in a herd of art-deco sheep—as she finds herself chased by a monster. He is frightening at first, until it becomes clear he simply wants to be her friend. When it comes time to go back to reality, the girl feels inspired with the courage to approach the other kids and say hello.

Full of humor and heart, this book delivers exquisite illustrations in a lively fantasy narrative that will inspire thinking about bravery and overcoming obstacles.

Written and Illustrated by

Thao Lam


April 15, 2018 with Owlkids Books

Starred reviews

  • “A unique and visually stunning approach to the classic dilemma of making new friends.” — Kirkus Reviews – STARRED REVIEW
  • “Lam’s rich visual storytelling illuminates the way that children’s internal lives help them move through loss and anxiety.” — Publishers Weekly – STARRED REVIEW
  • “A delight from start to finish.” — Quill & Quire – STARRED REVIEW

Notable reviews

  • “A fun, fanciful discovery with plenty of real-world applications.” — School Library Journal
  • “Satisfying visually, narratively, and emotionally.” — Booklist

Awards and honours

  • Cybils Children’s and Young Adult Bloggers’ Literary Awards – Shortlisted
  • A Kirkus Best Children’s Book of 2018
  • A New York Public Library 100 Best Books for Kids selection, 2018
  • An Elizabeth Mrazik-Cleaver Canadian Picture Book Award nominee, 2018
  • An International Board on Books for Young People Silent Books Collection selection

Contact Thao Lam

Illuminate stories with vibrant artwork, turning narratives into visual wonders. Let's bring your tales to life—reach out for unique illustrations!