Friday, July 25, 2008

What a joy to see children’s books of this quality………….

Lynley Dodd – Mallinson Rendel - $25

Lynley Dodd is of course internationally known for her delightful Hairy Maclary series but she has also written and illustrated many other titles over her long and illustrious career. I remember selling the very first book with which she was involved way back in my Napier bookselling days. It was My Cat Likes to Hide in Boxes which was written by Eve Sutton, and illustrated by Lynley. It remains to this day one of my favourites and I’m glad to note that Mallinson Rendel still has it in print.
In her new and entertaining picture book for young children she creates imaginary characters using her huge illustrative talents which will have them sitting on the edge of their seats. It is ok though because everything turns out fine in the end. Special.

How do you feel?
Written & illustrated by Tracy Duncan
Picture Puffin - $17.95 – Pub. 4 August

I just love the illustrations in this delightful, easy guide to say how you feel in te reo (Maori). Young and old alike will be able to describe whether they are feeling hoha (bored), makariri (cold), matekai (hungry), or simply tinopai rawe (fantastic).
There is a useful pronunciation guide at the back of the book.

Tracy Duncan, who lives in the Moutere Hill of Nelson with her family, is a fulltime artist and occasional author & illustrator. This is her fifth title, it was completed during a Wild Creations residency in Karamea last year, and in a nice touch is dedicated to the children of Mapua School which one suspects may be where her own kids attend school.

Tim Tipene & John Bennett
Scholastic - $16.99

Scholastic has published this title simultaneously in two separate editions, one in English and the other in Maori with the Maori retelling being provided by Katerina Mataira, one of NZ’s most experienced and respected Maori translators.

Hinemoa was tough, I am a warrior she would say, nothing frightened her until one day at the school swimming pool………
Great fun, 3-6 years.

Margaret Mahy & Polly Dunbar
Walker Books - NZ$29.99 A$27.99

Polly Dunbar is a noted UK-based children’s book illustrator who also illustrated one of Mahy’s earlier titles, Down the Back of the Chair.
Margaret Mahy is, of course, New Zealand’s most celebrated children’s writer whose books cover all ages from picture books for babies through to dark and mysterious fiction for young adults. She has twice won the Carnegie Medal, (the children’s book version of the Booker), and in 2006 was awarded the Hans Christian Andersen Medal for her outstanding contribution to children’s literature.

Bubble Trouble is a piece of verbal wizardry about Mabel and the townsfolk as they try to save baby brother who has floated away in a bubble. Many New Zealanders will know this story as it is a poem that Margaret has entertained and delighted us with over many years. Great to see it now in book form, and so beautifully illustrated. I’m sure the author will be thrilled with the result.
New Zealand publication September.
Put your name down now for a copy at your favourite bookshop.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a super collection of reviews. Thank you very much! I'm always on the hunt for great children's books and have recently discovered Bayard and their series of StoryBoxBooks, AdventureBoxBooks and DiscoveryBoxBooks (which is a special Olympic edition) They have work by acclaimed children's books illustrator Helen Oxenbury appearing in the Storybox series for September. In addition to this, they also have some great activities for rainy days:,, Enjoy!