Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Book Review, Night Noises

Night Noises Book ReviewQuite simply, Mem Fox is very, very good at what she does. What she does is speak to the hearts of children. And those who are children at heart.

Fox's Night Noises was delightfully illustrated by Terry Denton and first published by Omnibus in association with Penguin, 1989. I love the fat old dog, Butch Aggie, who lives with elderly Lily Laceby. While Lily dreams of her past, Butch Aggie becomes increasingly alarmed by noises outside the cottage. Denton's picture of a dog on her rug before the fire, one eye open and one ear up, is perfect. Each page adds a clue as to Lily's dreams, a clue as to what's going on outside, and the main picture of Lily and her dog.

Fox is spare with her text, but never afraid to be lyrical. Her descriptions are carefully chosen to reflect her theme. So we read that Lily's "hair was as wispy as cobwebs in ceilings" and her "bones were as creaky as floorboards at midnight." I also love the tiny subtext of Lily's actual age (four-and-a-half on the inside? - you and me, both, Lily!)

Night Noises joins my list of great picture books by this talented author. It would make a great resource for school children who are studying families, and be a good lead-in for a special event involving grandparents. As a follow-up activity, kids might like to write a letter to their own grandparent, or write one to Lily Laceby from Butch Aggie.

Grandparents are great - let's celebrate their importance in our lives!

(You can find more book reviews and literacy tips in the Book Chook archive, or at www.susanstephenson.com.au )


7 comments:

  1. I love Mem Fox! I thought I had read all of her books, but not this one...sounds good, like all of hers.

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  2. Shelly, I think you would truly enjoy it.

    Recent blog post: Book Review, Night Noises

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  3. I love this one! It's a wonderful picture book.

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  4. Mem Fox is a favorite, but I haven't read this one. Thanks for the great review.

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  5. Great, more charter members for the Mem Fox Fan Club!

    Recent blog post: Book Review, Night Noises

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    Book Review, Night Noises

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  6. Nice review. I agree, grandparents should be celebrated, yet it's so hard in the states (sometimes) because families are so spread out. It's sad that our kids don't get to see their grandparents more often.

    Recent blog post: Just Dealing With It

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  7. But great that you get to see them when you do, Fred.

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