Monday, February 5, 2024

Today's read... Loveykins by Quentin Blake

Today's read hits two directions of time. What does that mean? Well, this book was first released back in 2002 and has done very well (the author is also a much appreciated illustrator, so no surprise there).  Now, it's being re-released through Candlewick Press. So, theoretically, you can get your hands on a copy or, maybe, find it at a library...or you can enjoy the early excitement for the latest, upcoming edition. 

Either way, I haven't read it yet. so when I ran across it, I had to take a peek. 

by Quentin Blake
Candlewick Press
Picture Book
32 pages
ages 4 to 8


When Angela Bowling rescues a baby bird after a storm, she finds her very own Loveykins.

Following a blustery night, Angela Bowling finds a baby bird blown out of his nest. She names him Augustus, and he quickly becomes more to her than just a bird to be looked after. He's her little Loveykins.

But Augustus is growing larger and rounder and soon requires a special garden shed to house him. He seems content enough . . . until another night brings even stronger winds.

From the UK's first Children's Laureate, this droll tale about the improbable friendship between a determined, eccentric matron and a young bird is classic Quentin Blake. With his quirky, humorous watercolors and his distinctive storytelling style, Blake gives readers a charming and sensitive treatment of the issues of loving and letting go.


Whimsical meets touching with a pinch of silliness in a read which makes the heart fly.

Angela Bowling is out for a walk, when she discovers a baby bird on the ground. Of course, she's determined to save it and takes it home, where she keeps it warm inside of scarves and quilts, and feeds it only the most delicious foods. They head out for walks together with a new stroller, greet friends, and enjoy each other's company...more or less. When the bird grows too large for the stroller and basket it's been living in, she builds it a shed, and then, things take an interesting turn.

There's such a lovely balance between heart and humor as well as illustration and text. It holds a nice, short story, perfect for story-time and follows an older lady as she adopts a baby bird. The text flows smoothly with a more traditional tale atmosphere, while weaving in dabs of subtle silliness, which will catch listeners' attentions. 'Huh's', comments, giggles, and snorts are sure to sound as quirky details mold right in with the slightly-odd characters. There's sense in nonsense, and it creates a fun read from beginning to end.

Among the silly-seriousness, there is a message of forming friendships and letting go, which leaves off on a nice note. Animal fans will wonder about Bowling's care of the bird, which can open up to a bit of discussion, but this one is all about fun and is sure to become a reading favorite. But then, it already is.

And here he is...

Sir Quentin Blake is one of the world’s foremost illustrators, particularly renowned for his collaboration with writers such as Russell Hoban, Michael Rosen, Joan Aiken, and Roald Dahl. His books have won numerous awards, including the Whitbread Children’s Book Award, the Kate Greenaway Medal, and the Hans Christian Andersen Award for Illustration. In 1999 he was appointed the first UK Children’s Laureate, in 2005 he was named a Commander of the British Empire (CBE), in 2013 he received a knighthood for his services to illustration, and in 2023 he was made a Companion of Honor. He lives in South West London.

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