Children’s books have brought me some great times this month. Sure, I’ve had fun with my own, Walking Backward–which received another notable mention this past weekend in the National Post’s children’s book round-up. But I’ve had much more fun with other people’s.
Mid-month, I went to the launch of Dunces Anonymous by Kate Jaimet. This is a great book for tweens, all you holiday shoppers. It’s funny and charming, with memorable characters and hilarious scenes that will take you back to grade school (where you’ll want to join the Dunces Anonymous club).
At the launch, while Kate read an excerpt and signed copies for her fans, I helped young book-buyers make their own dunce caps. (My 7-year-old ate enough cookies for me to count this as a paid job). It was great fun. Kate signed my son’s copy of Dunces, “Don’t always do what your mother tells you.” I have to admit, that’s probably good advice.
A little later in the month, my youngest son and I watched Barbara Reid demonstrate the plasticine art techniques for which she’s famous. In her newest picture book, Perfect Snow, the colourful plasticine pictures are complemented by black and white panels of ink and watercolour paintings. Lovely. Gorgeous. And even better in person than on the page–there’s a depth and vividness to the plasticine that can’t be captured by a camera, and I’m so glad I got to see it in the flesh.
That event was topped off with the opportunity for young book-lovers to make their own plasticine art–a real treat for my son. (Not as tasty as cookies, but still a treat.) The kid is cleaning up on my newfound love of book launches, especially through his growing library of books signed by their authors. Ms. Reid signed his copy of Perfect Snow, “Let it snow.” (Also good advice.)
Now we’re patiently awaiting the next event. (Either cookies or art opportunities would be appreciated.)