Friday 25 September 2015


Teacup by Rebecca Young, illustrated by Matt Ottley (Scholastic Press)
HB RRP $24.99
ISBN 978-1-74362-384-8

Reviewed by Jenny Heslop

Teacup is a beautiful story. It is soft and gentle, with words which almost fade off the pages, yet it tells an enormous story about being displaced, about isolation and about finding a new home.

A young boy sets off in a boat with almost no possessions to find a new place to live. On his journey he watches the waves, the clouds, the stars and the sea creature, all reminding him of what he has left behind.

The illustrations are stunning. They range from grand to simple and use great contrasts in dark and light to create an emotional reaction. They capture isolation, longing and change so well.

The words, also, make this an evocative and beautiful reading experience.
‘And the way the clouds slowly swam into view reminded him of how things can change with a whisper.’

The peaceful air of dreamy contemplation – along with the tree growing in a teacup – make me think of Michael Leunig's work, subtly exploring what it means to be a refugee.

From the wonderful front cover, to the soft and ‘barely there’ end papers, this is a visually appealing picture book. And with many layers to the tale it tells, this is a rich, subtle, satisfying story infused with great hope. 

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