Rosie's Magic Horse by Russell Hoban

Rosie's Magic Horse

Written by Russell Hoban
Illustrated by Quentin Blake

3+ readers   

Selected by our Editorial Experts


Children’s Laureate Quentin Blake and best-selling author Russell Hoban have created an entrancing magical and lyrical fantasy that’s perfect for anyone who can share the dream of a magical adventure. A discarded lolly stick dreams of being something BIG…Luckily, it is picked up by Rosie, a little girl who already has a whole collection of lolly sticks. Soon she and all the lolly sticks are off on a rollicking adventure with the important task of raising money for her family. A delightfully quirky story that allows imaginations soar.

Quentin Blake's hallmark illustration style breathes energy and mischeviousness into something as small and ordinary as a disused ice-lolly stick. If an ice-lolly stick can be a horse...then YOU can be anything you wish to be! This beautiful edition is jacketed.


Rosie's Magic Horse by Russell Hoban

This is a story that could only have come from the imagination of Russell Hoban! Brought vividly to life by picture book great, Quentin Blake. This story begins with an ice-lolly stick. Its sweetness gone, it lies discarded and lonely...until a little girl called Rosie comes along. She places it carefully in her cigar box, full of other sticks. Without our ice-lollies we are nothing, says an old stick. But new stick wants to BE something and into the minds of all the old sticks, he plants dreams...maybe they can be something, too. What about Rosie and her dreams that night? She dreams of helping her parents pay the bills. And so, at the stroke of midnight, magic and dreams collide and a HORSE gallops out of the cigar box! His name is Stickerino. Where to? he asks Rosie. Anywhere with treasure! she answers and hops on its back. Then begins an adventure like no mountains by the sea, caskets of gold, and pirates foiled by a stickling ice-cream van...Inventive and original, this is a gem from the upside-down imaginative landscape of Russell Hoban.


CHILDREN'S BOOK OF THE WEEK * The Sunday Times * the expressiveness and zing of Blake's pictures ... are what really do the magical transporting here * The Sunday Times * An exciting adventure that will entice and captivate. Probably best read with plenty of yummy frozen goodies to hand, RMH has a beautiful hard jacket but a meltingly soft centre! * We Love This Book * A quirky, delightful story is magically illustrated by this master artist. Perfect for reading aloud or sharing with a class * CBI recommended reads of 2012 * a wonderful, magical adventure * Parents in Touch * `piece of comic genius for kids

`every bit as fun to read for grown-ups as it is for its intended pre-schooler audience.' * Bath Life * It's such a touching, enjoyable story, filled with imagination and gorgeous illustrations, I have a feeling that you will definitely hear `AGAIN!

. * INIS Magazine * Quentin Blake's dreamy images of a little girl who rides a horse made of abandoned ice lolly sticks in Russell Hoban's last opus makes Rosie's Magic Horse my Best Picture Book * The Times * Russell Hoban's enchanting story sets Quentin Blake's prancing lolly-stick horses galloping across cities and jungles and over oceans and deserts on a quest for pirate gold. * The Guardian * If you like fantastical adventures, this book is for you. * Juno * an enchanting book * New Statesman * This collaboration between a late, great storyteller and a living legend of children's illustration is inspired. * The Evening Standard * This new picturebook by Quentin Blake uses text by Russell Hoban, who died in 2011. It is about a horse made out of ice-lolly sticks that comes to life and flies, enabling a little girl to bring back pirate treasure to her parents, who are inundated with bills. It combines colloquialisms, made-up words - unvanned , stickled , rehorsed -- and the poetic: There was wind, there was rain, there were brown leaves blowing. But the expressiveness and zing of Blake's pictures, with detail of a rainy street, kitchen table, child's bedroom, rooftop party in an exotic city, pirates

-up, desert with vultures, jungle with parrots and landscape with pink sunset, are what really do the magical transporting here. -- Nicolette Jones * The Sunday Times *

About the Author

Russell Hoban

As a child

Russell Hoban was born in Pennsylvania, USA. His parents were Jewish immigrants from the Ukraine; his father was the advertising manager of a Jewish newspaper as well as a dram guild director. Russell was thus exposed to the arts early on, and became interested in writing at an early age, winning prizes for his stories and poems during his school years.

As an adult

Russell served in the US Infantry during WWII. For a time he taught art in New York and Connecticut. He then worked as a freelance illustrator and an advertising copywriter. He began publishing children's books in 1958, and since then has published more than fifty. His picture book The Sea-Thing Child, illustrated by Patrick Benson, was shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal. Russell passed away at the age of 86 in 2011.

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Book Info


40 pages


Russell Hoban
More books by Russell Hoban

Author's Website


Walker Books Ltd

Publication date

4th October 2012




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