The Tiny Star (Mem Fox, illus by Freya Blackwood, Puffin)
Individually, a new book by either Mem Fox or Freya Blackwood, both award-winners and bestselling children’s book creators, would be welcomed by their readers. This book combines the two, with a very gentle and touching story from Fox about the journey of life illustrated with Blackwood’s inimitable, stunning illustrations. The simple and beautiful story about the cycle of life is told with the utmost tenderness and involves the reader in the journey of a loving family as the narrative follows life’s adventures from beginning to end and beyond. Fox has written over 30 books and this extraordinary addition to her body of work will be treasured by readers. The superb illustrations in The Tiny Star extend the text and highlight the emotions shared by the people in the story. In the most heartfelt way, they invite closer involvement by readers who will want to go back through the pages again. Blackwood’s choice of palette enhances the gentle light, capturing the warmth and complexity of the story. The love that shines from each page is almost palpable. Babies grow, children play, adults care deeply as they experience immense happiness and grief, and all this is portrayed in the beautiful illustrations. Highly recommended, especially for families to share.
Margaret Hamilton AM is a former children’s book publisher and is now proprietor of Pinerolo, the Children’s Book Cottage in Blackheath, NSW