'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Wednesday 26 October 2016

Tania's Picks: Heart-Thumping Picture Books, October 2016

It's so very important that we frequent our local bookstores.

The 'revival' books have experienced since the industry's Annus Horribilis of 2011, has been, in part, the direct result of people craving that return to Real Living. Strolling into a bricks-and-mortar bookstore--that heart race, that knees-going-weak, overwhelming sigh of a feeling. Oh the choice. The calamity of where to look, where to start first. It's like falling in love.

Then there's the perusing, the deciding, the purchasing, the squirrelling books home to purr over them with tea and cake. That feeling of paper in hand. The weight of a book. The curl-up-in-bed-ness. The smell of the paper and ink, the dramatic pause as each page is turned...

And children's books are faring the very best of all, making up over 30 per cent of book sales in Australia (yet with a mere fraction of the exposure and credit they deserve--via the media, funding or otherwise) and more often than not, sitting firmly in the Top 10 weekly sales list--oftentimes at least half of said list being kids' books.


So do do do haunt your local bookstore frequently. Not only are they a heart-racing place to be, we need to support the booksellers who work so hard to support us creators who work so hard to give you and your kids sensational books to curl up with (preferably with tea and cake).

And, also think outside the square when it comes to purchasing books. Why not visit your local art gallery or museum or art supplies store? You could find some incredible kids' books--oftentimes books that sit outside the 'mainstream' flow--books that will stun you. Why not drop into a childrenswear or toy store, or a gift shop--and see what books they carry?

I found most of the following at the National Art Gallery and the Portrait Gallery here in Canberra--two of my favourite places to buy books. I pop in at least every couple of months, treat myself to a gallery peruse, and then spend just as much time in the bookstore!

I hope you enjoy these heart-thumpers--you will like them very, very much. At a bookstore near you. (And remember, if you can't find what you're looking for, your friendly bookseller will order it in for you and phone you when it arrives!)

The Book of Bees by Wojciech Grajkowski and Pietr Socha, Thames and Hudson, $35, 9780500650950, ages 6+
One of my favourite books of 2016, if not all time, I have also reviewed this stunning title. You can see it here.

 Good Night Owl, Greg Pizzoli, Disney Hyperion, $29.99, 9781484712757, ages 2 - 7

The Watermelon Seed, Greg Pizzoli, Disney Hyperion, $24.99, 9781423171010, ages 2 - 6

The Colour Thief, Gabriel Alborozo, Bloomsbury, $22.99, 9781408847534, ages 2 -7

Red Cat Blue Cat, Jenni Desmond, Blue Apple, $33.99, 9781609052485, ages 2 -7

Kate and Nate are Running Late!, Kate Egan and Dan Yaccarino, Feiwel and Friends, $33.99, 9781250000804, ages 4 - 8

A Christmas Carol, Jennifer Adams and Alison Oliver, Gibbs Smith, $14.99, 9781423625759, ages 0 - 3
This is a baby board book--one of many in this series.

Dracula, Jennifer Adams and Alison Oliver, Gibbs Smith, $14.99, 9781423624806, ages 0 - 3
This is a baby board book--one of many in this series.

Free the Lines, Clayton Junior, Words & Pictures, $19.99, 9781784936266, ages 2+
This book is wordless--divine!

Hello Goodbye, Delphine Chedru, Little Gestalten, $36.99, 9783899557534, ages 3+
This book has a 3D screen to hold over scenes that change according to which colour you look through--red or blue. Amazing!

Spellbound, Maree Coote, Melbournestyle Books, $39.95 large format, 9780992491727, ages 6+
If you love typography, hunt this book down, pronto!