Tuesday 8 March 2011

Crackers for Critters!

I have of late received an abundance of correspondence from readers pets, namely disgruntled cats, bully boy mongrels, several gingers cats with anger issues and a flatulent Guinea pig by the name of Jeffery Jam.
I am as you may be aware the proud owner of a cat, who just this very morning left a heart shaped fur ball at the foot of my dog basket (by way of thanking me for keeping her up to date with all of the exciting goings on in the world of picture books..no doubt.)

I thought I would indulge you with the following reviews for three of my faveourite critter filled picture books ...

We all look slightly aghast at the toothsome shark in front of us!

Bartholo-moomin' fantastic
Bartholomew and the Bug  by extreme sports action man - Neal Layton
Bartholomew is a bear of simple tastes (not unlike myslef *cough*) but this poor bear is lured, lured I tell you away from the comfort and saftey of the great outdoors into the bright dazzling lights and abundance of purveyors of gentleman's relish by a bug...A hippy bug...who only has hours to live! This is quite simply the most splendid tale of friendship (aside of course from Mouse and I natch)
Neal's skritchy scratchy pen work and characterisation of said bug is simply sublime.

The Book Sniffer gives Bartholomew and the Bug 3 cowboy hats and a bottle of moonshine out of 5

If you like this you'll love -
Addis Berner Bear Forgets by Joel Stewart

look in to my eyes..not around the eye..look into the eyes.."buy this book"
Penguin by the lovely as a cup cake  Polly Dunbar
I sometimes ponder as to just why I love this particular picture book so much but it has occured to me now that perhaps that slightly vacant starring black and white face is somewhat familiar...

Mouse wearing a hat fashioned out of a mince pie tin
Penguin has won many many awards and quite rightly so - it's simplistic wonder and the minute subtle details in the charaters has in my opinion never been quite caught with such perfection as in this book.
It is on a par with The Snowman in the masterful way in which it captures the unspoken. 

Funny? I wept and wept with laughter at the frustration of the poor little boy as he tries and tries to communicate with said Penguin. A masterpiece ...a boggly-eyed-black-and-white-wonder of a book...with a cherry on top.
The Book Sniffer gives this book 4 aloof penguins and a hat made out of a pie case out of 5

If you like this you'll love...
Bow Wow Bugs a Bug  by Megan Montague Cash

Snap up a copy!

Shark and Lobster's Amazing Underwater Adventure by feline fanatic  Viviane Schwarz and super cool Joel Stewart

This book is quite simply as refreshing as a light spray of fresh sea water in your face as you tuck into a piping hot bag of chips on the harbour!Having lived  with a ferocious cat myself for the past 16 years I can well understand Lobster and Sharks over whelming fear of Tigers!
Shark thinks it would be a good idea to build an underwater fortress to protect them from terrifying toothsome beasties with hilarious consiquences and a big ugly hulking great sea monster.
Joel Stewart is a master of pen and ink and his illustrations formatted in a simple comic book style with speech bubbles and frames make this a super read for young pups just about to progress to fiction and then inevitably on to paranormal romance...
Vivian Schwarz is well known to the Book Sniffer as the author of a particular fave There are Cats in this Book  - which I shall tell you more about very soon!

Image (c) Joel Stewart
If you like this you'll LOVE...
Red Ted

Thanks to everyone who sent in pictures of their pets reading picture books - What larks!

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