This & That by Mem Fox, illustrated by Judy Horacek (Scholastic Australia)
HB RRP $19.99
Reviewed by Jenny Heslop
Mem Fox’s latest picture book is a lively romp through a whimsical world of bedtime stories. This & That is a rhyming tale for two mice having adventures via stories.
‘I’ll tell you a story of this,
And I’ll tell you a story of that.’
The mice flow beautifully from one story to the next – down a river, on the back of an elephant, and so on – until they are back home, mother mouse kissing her child goodnight. The bedtime procrastination routine and the value of stories run clearly through the pages, but it is the bond between mother and child which shines thorough strongest as they journey through the world of stories together.
Horacek’s vibrant and joyous illustrations echo the energy of the text and her recognisable style and colour fill the sparsely worded pages. The partnership between word and pictures is beautifully balanced throughout.
The rhythm and repetition of the text make this a perfect bedtime read aloud story for the young. Both words and pictures leave so much scope for the imagination to flourish and grow.
The previous collaboration from this pair, Where is the Green Sheep? has been on top of best-selling lists for the last ten years.