I’ll tell you a story of this,
and I’ll tell you a story of that.
I’ll tell you a story
of cavernous caves
and a chimp
with a magic hat.
Two mice (adult and child) begin story time with an empty box, which transforms to a boat and launches their journey through imaginary worlds of the stories the adult promises. Down rivers and across oceans, through market places and palaces, with a cast including elephants, monkeys , kings and queens and so much more, the pair travel until it’s bedtime, and the adult leads the child home, finishing the final story with a kiss goodnight.
This & That is a lovely bedtime offering, with gently fantastical illustrations, and soothing rhyming text, making it suitable for the very young. It will withstand repeated readings and could be easily memorised- both by parent and child
Horacek’s illustrations balance lots of details on some pages, with deceptive simplicity on others, and the fact that the mice have no apparent gender is a nice touch.
This & That, by Mem Fox & Judy Horacek
Two books in one, in a beautiful package.
Two books in one. Read ‘These are My Hands’, then flip to read ‘These are My Feet’. Each is an exploration of what feet/hands do and what can be done with them. The language is gentle and spare, the illustrations colourful, childlike and full of movement.
This small square hardback is the sophisticated cousin of the board book, small enough and for little hands, with sturdy pages that will withstand repeated exploration. Perfect for sharing with preschool age children.
These are My Hands / These are My Feet, Judy Horacek NLA Publishing 2012 ISBN: 9780642277480
review by Claire Saxby, Children’s Author
Available from good bookstores or online
This laugh out loud little offering shows how one mum – who is, in a way, a part of every mum – lies sleepless through the night before Mother’s Day, enumerating the ‘delights’ the day will hold.
‘Twas the Night
before Mother’s Day,
Mum lay awake,
The sense of excitement
Was too much to take.
She knew that tomorrow
Would bring her such joys
As gifts from her daughter
And two darling boys.
This laugh out loud little offering shows how one mum – who is, in a way, a part of every mum – lies sleepless through the night before Mother’s Day, enumerating the ‘delights’ the day will hold. First there will be home made gifts and flowers pulled (with roots intact) from the garden. Then there will be breakfast, made with love, but not easily digested. As Mum tosses and turns she frets about these and the other joys the day ahead holds – before thinking, finally, of her own mum who will understand, having been there herself.
In small format hardcover, with cartoon illustrations, mothers will nod in agreement with the humour of the book, making it an ideal Mother’s Day gift, especially from one mother to another. Of course, in spite of the illustrated format this one is aimed at adults rather than children – with little ones unlikely to appreciate the wry humour, although older children and teens may well get it and join in the laughter.
As for this mother – she loved it!
The Night Before Mother’s Day, by Doug MacLeod & Judy Horacek
Allen & Unwin, 2012
This book is available from good bookstores, or online from Fishpond.