The Piano

The Piano

A review of The Piano by Joaquín Camp

Published on March 14, 2024

Joaquín Camp’s The Piano looks as if it was put together on a rainy afternoon, pencil and ruler in hand, along with an old pack of soft pastels lying around with some of the colours missing. Yes, the story’s artwork is rudimentary and childlike, but whoever said that was a bad thing? The book’s aesthetic is hip, reflected in the unrefined lines, flat, 2D faces, and sometimes disproportionate body parts of the story’s characters. 

The Piano
Joaquín Camp

The Secret Mountain

What’s most impressive about this pick in The Secret Mountain’s growing collection of musical picture books is that as simple as it is, it opens up a whole world to readers’ imagination. Centred on two children, a piano, and an adult’s bidding not to touch it, what ensues is a musical riot in the best sense of the word. Given the minimal text in The Piano, watching the accompanying video on the publisher’s website will enhance the overall experience. It’s also really fun to watch on its own!

Ironically, although Camp’s story doesn’t contain many words, readers will still pick up a few snazzy ones, like “onomatopoeia” (the use of words to imitate sounds) and “synesthesia” (experiencing sensory information through unrelated senses, like tasting colour or feeling sound). Need I say more?mRb


Phoebe Yī Lìng is a freelance writer, editor, and full-time explorer. She currently works with the Nunavik Inuit community as a Gladue writer and sometimes spends her time dabbling in experimental performance or marvelling at the complexities of intra/interpersonal communication.



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