Baby Days, by Ian Bone

Baby days are busy days. Baby doesn’t just eat, sleep and play. He sees wonder in everything he sees and does.

From waking with the sun to riding on a broom-stick horsie and sailing in a tub, the reader views the baby’s day through his rich imagination.

Ian Bone’s text is lyrical yet very simple, floating its way through the book as the baby floats his way through his day. The illustrations of Anne Spudvilas, in rich pastel tones, match the mood of the text perfectly. Spudvilas works in oils and watercolour ink washes to recreate the gentleness of baby’s world. The baby is delightfully gender-neutral.

Baby Days is perfect for gentle bedtime reading and would be a perfect gift for a new born or for a Christening.

Baby Days, by Ian Bone, illustrated by Anne Spudvilas
Omnibus, 2003

Shoo Cat, by Ian Bone

Matt is surprised when a strange cat comes to visit. He already has a cat, Pudding, and tells the strange cat he can’t come in.

Matt’s dad is also cross with the strange cat. “Shoo cat,” he says every time he sees it. But despite Dad and Matt’s efforts, the strange cat keeps coming back, looking for food, shelter and company. What can they do?

Shoo Cat, by Ian Bone is a Solo title for beginning readers, from Omnibus. In a highly illustrated novel format, these books are designed to help youngsters make the transition from picture books to first novels. Shoo Cat is a fun easy read.

Shoo Cat, by Ian Bone, illustrated by Ann James
Omnibus Books, 2003

Dancing Night, Tonight, by Ian Bone

Every Tuesday night Millie’s Mama goes out dancing. Millie stays home with Dad, but that’s okay because Millie has dancing night at home.

Mama and Millie put on their matching dresses, their shiny red dancing shoes and put ribbons in their hair. Then Mama goes out while Millie dances with Papa in the loungeroom.

Soon, though, doubts creep in. What if Mama can’t get home, or forgets to come home, or – worst of all – doesn’t want to come home? Gently her father reminds her of the links she shares with her mother, sending the fears dancing on their way, until Millie’s mother comes home with the final reassurance.

Dancing Night, Tonight is a gentle picture book from writer Ian Bone and illustrator Anna Pignataro. Pignataro’s illustrations, using a combination of pencil, water colour, ink and gouache, create an almost dream-like quality to the story and echo the gentleness of the text.

A perfect bed-time story.

Dancing Night, Tonight
, by Ian Bone, illustrated by Anna Pignataro
Scholastic, 2003