cover image The Children Who Loved Books

The Children Who Loved Books

Peter Carnavas. EDC/Kane Miller, $11.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-61067-145-3

Australian author/illustrator Carnavas introduces a family whose lack of a TV set or car is offset by an abundance of books and a tight-knit relationship. The family’s vintage camper is stuffed to bursting with books: early scenes show siblings Angus and Lucy stretched out reading on hills of hardcovers; the family even uses books to prop up toasters, cat beds, and wonky tables (try doing that with an iPad). But one sad day, “their home could take no more,” and the children’s bearded father carts away all the books. “Bowls slid off the table. Angus couldn’t reach the window. And because there was more space in their home, there was a lot more space between them all.” Working in ink and watercolor cartoons that recall (in theme and execution) the work of Peter H. Reynolds, Carnavas shows the family staring glumly from the four corners of an empty white spread; a library book brings them back together, literally and figuratively. Without being overly sentimental, Carnavas pays tribute to the way books unite people—and balance the occasional table, too. All ages. (Sept.)