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James Mayhew is an acclaimed illustrator, author, concert presenter and storyteller. James is the illustrator of the highly praised picture book Gaspard the Fox series and the creator of the much-loved Katie and Ella Bella Ballerina series. His most recent title with Graffeg was the republication of the celebrated Koshka’s Tales. He is also a recipient of the New York Times book illustration award.
A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month May 2021 | Gaspard the Fox is back for a third wonderful adventure and this time he takes a trip right across London and finds himself on the stage at a concert in Hyde Park! From his hiding place on a number 38 bus, Gaspard gives a wonderful commentary on the sights he sees. There’s the delicious smells of China Town, the bustling crowds of Piccadilly Circus and the beautiful windows of Fortum and Masons. Gaspard loves it all but he can’t let himself be distracted as he has to get off the bus with his friends Honey and Finty. He almost misses the stop but gets off just in time to find himself having a starring role in the Proms in the Park! This foxy fantasy is full of good humour and cheer as well as being a wonderful musical celebration.
We first met Mrs Noah in Mrs Noah’s Pockets whilst the family were all on the Ark. Now the Ark has made land and whilst Noah makes the Ark into a home, Mrs Noah sets about planting a garden in the fresh new earth. Her always deep pockets furnish all the seeds needed for the job, the ark provides the trees they have nurtured along the way and she enlists the children to help her tend the new garden. A deceptively simple story –it is in the illustrations that we see the development of the garden as the pictures move from a dark rocky palette, to a more organised series of garden terraces, with colour gradually growing in each spread as we progress through the book – until at last we have a wonderful explosion of plants and animals for all the birds, bees and humans to share. A wonderful celebration of the joys of planting and growing, I can see it being used to seed discussions around how you might create a garden – in school or at home. Plus, as the publisher points out, it provides a positive way of encouraging discussion around migrants and refugees – as Mrs Noah and her family build a new home in a foreign land. I can see this becoming a firm favourite in classrooms all over the country.
At last all were gathered inside the ark. It heaved with animals, large and small. Mrs Noah wore a brand-new coat, with a hood and a cape - and very deep pockets. Lots of pockets. When Mr Noah builds the ark, he makes two lists - one for all the animals who will come on board and one for those troublesome creatures he will leave behind. Meanwhile, Mrs Noah gets out her sewing machine and makes a coat with very deep pockets. Lots of pockets.
When Katie visits an art gallery for the first time with Grandma, she discovers that art is wonderfully exciting, especially when five famous paintings come alive for her . . . Expect a little bit of mischief, a lot of cream cakes and even a friendly tiger!
May 2018 Debut of the Month | A Julia Eccleshare Pick of the Month May 2018 | A wonderfully warm-hearted animal adventure based on Zeb Soanes observation of a local urban fox. Waking up hungry one evening, Gaspard sets out to find something to eat. Luckily, he quickly makes two new friends - Peter a rather cool cat and Finty a frisky dog who has dug a way out of his garden so that he can roam the streets without an owner. Helped by his new friends Gaspard secures himself a delicious meal and returns happy and FULL. The three friends and their adventure and the urban landscape of the setting are all perfectly captured in James Mayhew’s illustrations.
Far out to sea and deep below the whispering waves lives a merman called Nen. Nen spends his days exploring his underwater kingdom, but something is missing: his heart is empty. So, Nen ventures to the forbidden world above and it is here that he meets Ernest, a lonely fisherman. But can two people from different worlds be together and what will happen when a terrifying storm gathers? A lyrical, beautiful celebration of love, acceptance and faith, with a gentle message about how we treat our oceans, and each other.
These wonderful plays are retold by Beverley Birch and complemented by stunning artwork from James Mayhew. This book makes a lovely present as well as being a wonderful collectable introduction to Shakespeare's work. The plays included are: Romeo and Juliet , Macbeth , Twelfth Night , A Midsummer Night's Dream , and Julius Caesar .
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