I have always liked Tohby Riddle’s work, especially his picture books or graphic novels. He has created some wonderful picture books over the years and he has developed different styles of illustrations to fit his stories.
I loved his sense of humour and the light comic touch in My Uncle’s Donkey and The Great Escape from City Zoo, which I had to buy and read to my young niece and nephews. His comic illustrations in the WordSpy books were fantastic as well as the collections of cartoons in Pink Freud.
He now has a new picture book just published and it is quite different from those I mentioned above. It is however wonderful with illustrations that evoke all sorts of ideas. As with most Allen and Unwin books there are teacher’s notes prepared already for you but I think that the illustrations will mean many different things to all those who read the book.
The was an article recently in The Age but I enjoyed listening to a broadcast from an ABC (Central Victoria) program. You can listen to the ABC’s children’s literature expert Sarah Cox and presenter Ann Jones talk to Tohby Riddle about his new book Unforgotten. In the interview he discusses the technique he used to illustrate the book and some of his ideas.
Tohby has also created a book trailer, see below, and my very favourite illustrator, Shaun Tan, has been quoted on that site.
‘Reading this book is like being quietly ushered into another dimension by winged strangers, a place beyond the tread of normal earth-bound language. Ephemeral as a feather, timeless as a rock, and as true as both, Unforgotten is a magical experience.’
– Shaun Tan
There is nothing more I can really say except to quote a well-known media celebrity from Melbourne and say “do yourself a favour, and go out and get/read a copy for youself”