CILIP KATE GREENAWAY MEDAL SHORTLIST 2004 (presented in 2005)
(Text by Helen Ward) THE BOAT
In this imaginative retelling of the Noah story, the people of a town, and one boy in particular, race against time to save a reclusive old man and his menagerie from rising flood waters. Ian Andrew’s illustrations are of outstanding quality, conveying a wonderful sense of place and perspective, light and shade in a primarily grey palette, lifted by small glimmers of bright colour.
AYTO (Text by Mij Kelly) ONE MORE SHEEP
A dozy farmer tries to count his sheep before going to bed, but just can’t seem to help falling asleep much to the dismay of his intelligent flock, who sense that the big bad wolf is not far away. The sense of movement and body posture in this book are brilliantly conveyed from the word go, as are the individual personalities of the ten sheep. Ayto also demonstrates a wonderful use of different colour palettes to evoke the contrast between the warmth of the farmer’s house and the “wuthering” weather outside. A book in which the illustrations add a great deal to the text.
BARTRAM DOUGALS’ DEEP-SEA DIARY
Dougal takes a diving holiday away from the daily commuting grind and encounters whales, dolphins, zillions of fish and the lost city of Atlantis. The illustrations are distinctive, bold and surreal, the quality of light stunning and the colours luminescent. Visual jokes abound; there is so much happening on each page that you can read it again and again and still find something new. A true marriage of illustration and story.
BLAKE (Text by Michael Rosen) MICHAEL ROSEN’S SAD BOOK
Author Michael Rosen’s anatomy of the grief which overwhelmed him following the death of his beloved son Eddie. Quentin Blake’s illustrations are as powerful as Rosen’s text, and speak volumes. Their ability to capture the author’s emotions with pinpoint accuracy is outstanding, and Blake’s clever use of colour helps the reader to understand the pleasures that Rosen took in his son’s life, as well as the heartbreak of his death. A profound and masterful work for everyone’s bookshelf.
BUTTERWORTH THE WHISPERER
In this lively reworking of Romeo & Juliet with a narrator rat, alley cats Amber and Monty defy their parents by falling in love, with very interesting results. A book with a “cinematic feel”, with plenty of interplay between the vibrant illustrations and lively text. The expressions of the cats tell the story almost without the need for words. Clear white-on-black text and a wealth of comic detail in the illustrations make this an ideal book to share, read alone or read aloud.
KELLY (Text by Cathy Tincknell) GUESS WHO’S COMING FOR DINNER?
Horace and Glenda Pork-Fowler take up an invitation to enjoy a weekend’s hospitality at Eatem Hall, and only narrowly escape being on the menu themselves. The dead-pan text contrasts with the illustrations: children love looking for the visual clues which suggest the pantomime fate which awaits the weekend guests. A very distinctive book which works fantastically well with children.
RIDDELL (Text by Martin Jenkins) JONATHAN SWIFT’S “GULLIVER”
A modern day retelling of the four extraordinary voyages of Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver. Riddell’s grotesque representation of Swift’s wacky worlds results in a perfect synthesis of words and pictures, and 144 pages of exuberant colour and matchless wit. A staggering achievement, beautifully produced. All this, and a memorable Tony Blair caricature too.
29 April 2005