Tag Archives: Adam Stower

#BookADayUK Have More Than One Copy

I have several books that I can choose for more than one copy. I was going to go with The Hobbit, of which I have the 50th anniversary paperback, the 50th anniversary hardback, and the 1997 or 2000 Alan Lee illustrated hardback.

But I could have chosen a host of children’s books, including Dogger, Fortunately the Milk, The Tale of Jack Frost, The Jolley-Rogers and the Ghostly Galleon, Dixie O’Day in the Fast Lane, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Winnie the Pooh, complete Beatrix Potters, various Roald Dahl, and if you count different versions of fairy tales then I’ve no idea how many copies we might have…

However I’ve decided to use #BookADay to make a chink in the pile of review books that we have so today’s book is one I have to keep in hardback and paperback because of my friend ReadItDaddy‘s quote on the paperback edition 🙂

Troll and the Oliver: Adam Stower (Templar Publishing, 2013)Troll and the Oliver: Adam Stower (Templar Publishing, 2013)

This was one of my top picture books for 2013 but I still haven’t written about it properly. It’s one of those books that you love so much so you know you can never do it justice and therefore don’t write about it at all. Well, that’s what I do…

Troll and the Oliver is funny and subversive. I adore subversive picture books. I’m afraid this is going to be a spoilery review, so for a quick synopsis to avoid spoilers have a look at the top picture books post, otherwise be warned if you continue reading.

Walking back from the park today, in the sun and having not read this book for several weeks (we do have over 700 picture books to get through) I asked Danger Girl (5) whether she liked Troll and the Oliver? Yes, she replied. What’s your favourite bit of the book, I asked? When the Troll eats Oliver, she grinned.

This is a story that sticks in children’s heads, it chews up the rules and spits them out in a laugh-out-loud surprise, that’s quickly turned into a bigger laugh and a fabulous ending.

In Troll and The Oliver, the little boy is the antagonist. He’s not Oliver, he’s an Oliver and Troll becomes not a Troll, but the protagonist in his own right. This is Troll’s story, and the meany Oliver is making his life a misery by not letting Troll catch and eat him.

Obviously, from DG’s favourite bit of the book, Troll eventually does catch the Oliver. Have you ever seen the Loony Tunes episode where Wile E Coyote catches Road Runner? This is the book equivalent, but with a more satisfying ending for all concerned.

I can’t praise this book highly enough, and recommend it to all. Both MG and DG think it’s amazing, and it leads to lots of interesting conversations about conventions in story telling.

Disclosure: Troll and the Oliver received for review from Templar Publishing

Friday Pick{ture Book} #8: Silly Doggy

Silly Doggy: Adam Stower (Templar Publishing, 2011)

Silly Doggy: Adam Stower
(Templar Publishing, 2011)

This is such a beautiful gem of a picture book. It’s one where the words and pictures tell a slightly different story so best when a young child isn’t quite so literal (not babies or very young toddlers) but has got the hang of the humour in differences.

One morning, Lily saw something wonderful in her garden.
It was big, brown and hairy.
It had four legs, a tail and a big, wet nose, and Lily had ALWAYS wanted one…

Lily’s “Silly Doggy” isn’t really a dog, but this is never mentioned in the text. You need the gorgeous pictures to see the real story. The teeny tiny little girl with her huge shaggy bear and no fear are a lovely contrast, and we feel quite sad at the end when Doggy has to go back to his home.

One morning, Lily saw something wonderful

MG and DG love this book, and I can happily read it over and over again. MG (5.5) really enjoys writing and drawing, and making her own books. She also copies books she loves, to practice her letters (all of her own volition) and I was delighted to see the fantastic front cover illustration she’d copied from this book. I may be slightly biased 😆 DG (3) finds Doggy hilarious. A wonderful book, and a perfect addition to any bookshelf.

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