Faber & Faber Children’s Picture Books Launch
Earlier this month, Bunny and I were invited to join Faber & Faber at the launch of their children’s picture books. We arrived at the Faber office building, just a short walk from the British Museum and followed some cat paw prints through the reception, along the hallway, into a lift and out a few floors up, through some double doors and into a room filled with other children of a similar age. They were sat enthralled by Liz, the storyteller who was dressed as a detective and on the hunt for a missing cat called Squishy McFluff.
Now, Squishy isn’t your normal, run of the mill cat and had made being found somewhat difficult due to being invisible (or is he imaginary?)! Squishy’s owner, Ava, could tell us that Squishy had fur of silvery white but as only she could see him, it wasn’t a lot of help: Can you see him? My kitten? Close your eyes tight His fur is so soft and all silvery white Imagine him quick! Have you imagined enough? Oh, good, you can see him! It’s Squishy McFluff! So Liz led the children with their magnifying glasses to see if they could find him.
On their cat-seeking mission, they also ran into a police detective who was on the hunt for another cat, the ever-mysterious Macavity. Macavity, Macavity, there’s no one like Macavity, He’s broken every human law, he breaks the law of gravity. Liz gave the children some materials to make a cat mask and asked them to join the ID parade to see if they would be identified as Macavity. Luckily none of them were the naughty cat and they were allowed to continue to seek out Squishy.
After some more hunting, we happened upon a land of dinosaurs and a particular dinosaur who was having trouble getting to sleep. The children helped by singing a lullaby to her and before long, she was snoring soundly.
The children returned to the starting point and discovered that Father Christmas had been and left a box of delights with hats and scarves galore for the children to wear. Which was lucky because as they set off again, they came across a snowy landscape and a large snowman sheltering in the corner. The children and Liz had lots of fun trying to balance all of the hats on the snowman’s head in a teetering tower before they made their way off again.
Their final stop was at the story of Candy Stripe Lil and Harry the Hog who lived over the hill …and a foggy March day, round about three, when Lil had invited Harry for tea. The children discovered a feast of leftovers of slug-flavoured chips and chocolate chip beetles. They tucked into the unusual food and all too soon it was time to go home. A wonderful afternoon, filled with delightful stories, lovingly brought to life by Liz and the scenes around the room.
On the train home, we sat and read the Harry & Lil Story: Hog in the Fog and Squishy McFluff books in our goodie bag and Bunny laughed with glee at Squishy’s antics; a true indicator of it’s entertainment value as she was actually very tired and a little bit ill by this point. Both stories are told in rhyming prose, lending a fun voice to the tales.
Disclaimer: We were invited to this event and were given the two books to take home but received no payment and all opinions are my own as always.