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

Tuesday 12 December 2023

Review: Big World, Tiny World: Bush

At times in this big universe

You can feel rather small.

But there are worlds of every size to see,

Worlds for each and all.

This beautiful book, a standalone story in a series of three written and illustrated by Melbourne’s own superstar Jess Racklyeft, takes children into the wonder and delight of the Australian bush.

Gorgeous, loosely rhyming, wonderful sounding and tangled words accompany Racklyeft’s multi-media, textural and utterly divine illustrations that always make you want to run your fingers over them. And indeed, the book’s cover has textured lettering and shiny bits to satisfy every tactile impulse for big and small fingers alike!

Both words and pictures draw us magically into the movement of our unique landscape. Readers are encouraged to look up and out of themselves, into the sky and stars and wind and trees and water and land – and then to look down and into the tiny, sometimes hidden and secret worlds on the bush floor.

There are butterfly and moth endpapers to sing your heart awake the moment you open the cover. Then, there’s a cut-out moon that runs through this book (other titles have a cut-out star and a sun), bringing another layer of interest and fun to the delights on every page. The sunrise shining on the river is a stunning surprise toward the end, and with so many magnificent milestones along the way this story is bound to become a favourite. 

And if you need another excellent reason to pop this book onto your reading or gifting list (as if!), a foreword from the author talks about the need for us to look after our precious and endangered creatures.

Sounds like a slam-dunk to me!

Title: Big World, Tiny World: Bush
Author/Illustrator: Jess Racklyeft
Publisher: Affirm Press, $19.99
Publication Date: 31 October 2023
Format: Hardcover
ISBN: 9781922863867
For ages: 3 - 8
Type: Picture Book