Last night I loudly exclaimed “I love this, I love this!” while reading this book to myself. My husband, sitting close by, didn’t respond. He was trying to read another book to the kids at the time and perhaps didn’t appreciate my enthusiasm.
The author’s name was familiar to me when I picked the book out (I couldn’t remember why) and after I read the story I started to read the blurb about the author/illustrator on the book’s jacket. Suddenly it hit me. “It’s her,” I interrupted my husband again, “it’s by the woman who did Sunshine and Moonlight!” I could hardly contain myself. “It’s her, I repeated. This one has words!”
Jan Ormerod is a seriously underrepresented author at our library! I always wondered what works she completed, and now I know she can project that familial love and warmth even with a book with text. This one is called Lizzie Nonsense (2004), about a little girl living in the pioneer Australian bush, whose Papa must leave for weeks to take a trip to town. Lizzie and Mama are left with each other, Baby, and Lizzie’s dear imagination.
You can guess I’m already a big fan of Ormerod’s illustration. How many artists can portray a father in his tighty whities and still make the scene look sweet and charming (Sunshine, 1981)? There’s a lot of love that shines through her drawings, without being too saccharine. Ormerod has the knack for finding the beauty in the simple interplay between parent and child and their daily tasks.
This is my library pick of the week.