Tag Archives: Freya Blackwood

The Tiny Star – Mem Fox/Freya Blackwood

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9780670078127

Penguin

1st October 2019

ISBN: 9780670078127

Imprint: Puffin

RRP: $24.99

Mem Fox has triumphed again with this simply beautiful new picture book inspired by the most personal of motivations – the bond between loving grandparent and grandchild.

In their first collaboration Mem and Freya have produced a gentle and warming exploration of life and death that will resonate with many readers, both young and old.

When a tiny star falls to earth it turns into a baby to be cherished, nurtured and loved by its family, growing and thriving in that security of warmth and tenderness.  All the time, growing taller and getting older and eventually creating its own family where the circle of love continues.  After many full and happy years the star that was begins to become frailer and to shrink until once again becomes tiny, so tiny that it disappears it seems. But no, once again the tiny star sparkles in the night sky reminding all that the love we feel never ends.

Some readers will know that I am raising my beautiful granddaughter so I can completely relate to this expression of love and the accompanying realisation that one day we will not be here for our grandchildren.  In the meantime, how privileged are we to share so deeply in their lives and forge these bonds that will last forever.

Thank you Mem and Freya for this outstanding and tender testament to that love which, I have no doubt, will be not only welcomed but lauded with praise.

Highly recommended for both your professional and personal shelves to share with young readers from toddlers upwards – why not pre-order yours now!

Stay posted for a forthcoming Q&A with the inimitable Mem soon!

 

The Cleo Stories: The Necklace & The Present – Libby Gleeson/Freya Blackwood

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cleostories

ISBN: 9781743315279
Australian Pub.: October 2014
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Imprint: A & U Children
Suitable for ages: 5-8

RRP $16.99

You just know when you pick up a book created by this pair of very talented individuals, that you are in for a real treat. Certainly, this is no exception!

Cleo is six and like most little six year old girls loves her family and her friends very much. She also loves necklaces and presents and in these two stories, her imagination and ingenuity come to the fore – amid some tiny mishaps.

When my eldest daughter was this age, she came home from school one day asking for pink court shoes because ‘everyone’ at school wore them. So when I read The Necklace with Cleo asking her parents for a necklace because ‘everyone’ else has one, I laughed with the reminiscence. As Mum and Dad kindly point out, three friends do not make ‘everyone’ and necklaces are special presents, not everyday gifts. Undeterred, Cleo is inspired by her clearly much-loved Uncle Tom and comes up with a highly creative solution!

Cleo’s next dilemma is trying to think of just the right present for her Mum’s birthday. Having only a few coins in her piggy bank doesn’t allow for buying something expensive and flashy, she doesn’t want to ‘share’ in Dad’s present, she doesn’t think helping Dad cook dinner is much of a present so what can she do? She wants to give Mum a proper present, wrapped up and tied with a bow. Then once more, her imaginative little mind results in the most perfect present Mum could ever want!

This is a gorgeous book – with sweet gentle stories which will resonate with little people, especially girls, and the ever-beautiful illustrations of Freya Blackwood (oh those endpapers!!! Just lovely!).

I am put in mind of the simple but charming stories of Milly-Molly-Mandy from so long ago – stories which still engage young readers. I foresee this will be in the 2015 shortlist – and deserves to be.

Imagination, creativity and values which we should be encouraging and nurturing in our small humans imbue the text throughout.

If you have a special little girl in your life – this will make a treasured gift – and for your newly independent readers wanting to move into a lengthier picture book, a perfect addition to your library shelves.

Check out Libby’s website and also Freya’s.

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