As last month was Picture Book Month, hopefully you were looking at the site and learned from 30 'picture book ambassadors' the importance of picture books (in printed form!) in all our lives, not just the lives of our children. And please keep in mind, picture books are not just for the very young or pre-readers. Many are not written for young children (take Sally Gardners' new book 'Tinder' with it's evocative illustrations by David Roberts. That qualifies as a picture book; as does the original edition of 'A Monster Calls' by Patrick Ness with it's illustrations by Jim Kay.) But I digress...
Here a just a few of the wondrous picture books that I particularly loved this year.
A wordless, stunning masterpiece that the entire family will want to ponder again and again. A small, lonely girl draws a door on her bedroom wall... a door that leads her on an adventure of beauty and discovery. The best!
SONG OF THE GOLDEN HARE
author/illustrator: Jackie Morris
The boy and his family have a very special role to play...they seek out orphaned leverets and keep them safe; for they are the ones that hold the secret of the song of the golden hare. The boy has been waiting all his life for the chance to hear that song... and to watch the magic it brings.
author/illustrator: Rebecca Cobb
A boy and girl are very cross... Mum and Dad are going away for the night, and they do not want to be 'looked after'; especially since Mum has left a list of boring instructions! But Aunt Amelia is a bit different... and she's a lot more fun! An utter delight!(Also look for Cobb's Lunchtime; now out in paperback)
ROSIE REVERE, ENGINEER
author: Andrea Beaty illustrator: David Roberts
From the same team that gave us the wonderful Iggy Peck, Architect comes a new picture book about pursuing your dream, regardless of what others may think. Rosie is a quiet girl by day, but an amazing inventor by night who dreams of, one day, becoming a great engineer.
THE KING OF SPACE
author/illustrator Jonny Duddle
Rex is a normal 6-year-old boy. He lives on his parents' moog farm and attends a galactic citizen school. But Rex has big dreams... one day he will be King of Space. With his unwitting friends, Rex builds an army of warbots and begins to conquer unknown worlds. But when he goes too far, there's only one person who can save him....his tough-talking mum! Another brilliant and exciting book from the creator of The Pirate-Cruncher and The Pirates Next Door. I love Jonny Duddle and so will you!
author/illustrator: Birgitta Sif
Oliver is different. He enjoys his solitude and playing with his friends who are puppets, stuffed animals and other toys. Through his imagination, they build towns and go on adventures. But sometimes, toys don't give you everything you need. One day, while playing tennis by himself, Oliver discovers a new companion.
This is a quiet, beautiful book about imagination, loneliness and friendship with quiet, expressive illustrations...a first picture book from Birgitta Sif. I look forward to many more from her!
Now... there's six for you to consider. Stay tuned; there will be more in the upcoming days!
(A bit later that same day.....) Where's my head? A very, very favourite I forgot to add earlier:
author: Helen Docherty illustrator: Thomas Docherty
A wonderful, whimsical and poignant book all about the importance of story at bedtime. This one is a must for every child and their grown-ups!