Friday, September 5, 2014

A Feature of Pictures (and Books!) No. 7

A mix match pair- one book has illustrations I loved but a story that didn't quite end up being what I had hoped for, one went the opposite way!

Title: Sylvia and Bird.
Author: Catherine Raynar.
Publisher: Hardie Grant Egmont. Imprint: Little Tiger Press.
Publish Date: 1st July 2014.
RRP: $14.99 AUD.

Whilst it didn't quite blow my socks off the way I was absolutely sure it would, Sylvia and Bird is quite a special little read, and (this is where it gets to the predictable whats-Romis-favourite-thing-about-picture-books part) the illustration was just... so, so wonderful. It had a mix of blue and green and hold and white in Sylvia that was so beautiful, and she was drawn/painted so exquisitely. You can see the paint actually cracking on the white and gold spots on her back!
The backgrounds weren't quite so splendid- she totally stole it for me.
The story was touching and quite sweet, too, though as I say not all I hoped it would be. A simple story that left me with a little bit of a single eye squint as I pondered an unanswered, and prominent, question, but it was still very nice.

Image Credit: Hardie Grant.

Thank you to Hardie Grant Egmont for providing both of these review books!

Image Credit: Hardie Grant.

Title: Outside.
Author: Libby Hathorn. Illustrator: Ritva Voutila.
Publisher: Hardie Grant Egmont. Imprint: Little Hare.
Publish Date: 1st August 2014.
RRP: $24.95 AUD.

This one is about the opposite of the review above, though my feelings a little more strengthened overall.
The illustrations- though really just of the humans, cat & sheep- weren't my cup of tea and I actually found them a touch creepy, though think as I might I can't find wording as to why. I just found them... a bit too much. The rest, however, trees and the garden and birds, it's eye catching and vibrant and perfectly dreamy, which is oh so right for this book.
The words are like a rhyme that circles onto itself and I liked it, found it imaginative and dreamy and a little bit beautiful in it's toung-twistyness.


  1. Awww, Sylvia and the Bird looks SO CUTE, though. I'm going to look out for that one at my library for my nephew/niece. Pfft. Who are we kidding? For me too. I like dragons.

    1. There is a Wyverary in the Fairyland books, Cait, which is a Wyvern and a library mixed into one and that's a type of dragon, so that means you'll need to read those books even sooner. (:
      Dragons, Fairyland aside, are excellent, and Sylvia is quite the spiffiest drawn one I've seen in a long while.

  2. Oooh, I haven't read a picture book in soooo long, and I think I do prefer the premise and look of Sylvia and Bird over Outside. You're right, the images just look a little creepy for a child's book. Very Tim Burton I must say!

    1. I've always loved them and have quite a collection from childhood, and more recent times, but I also look after my neice for a part of the week so it all comes in handy. I get to read a lot of picture books with her, and it's so interesting seeing what she thinks of books I haven't liked so much, or even ones I've loved.

      That's just right! I think they're absolutely Tim Burton-esq!


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