Hi Folks in the Smoke,
As Halloween fast approaches I think a spooky offering might be in order. This is a fun, rhyming story from the talented Tracey Corderoy teamed with lush, retro illustrations by Joe Berger. It was published last Autumn and there is a new installment "Whizz, Pop, Granny, Stop!" out now, but I thought I'd opt for the original today.
The eponymous Granny causes trouble because she isn't a typical Granny - she isn't sweet and simple, she doesn't have a purple rinse or WI friends. She has unusual pets and strange habits and uses mischievous magic to make life easier and more fun. While this might sound great, her granddaughter finds it disconcerting. She'd prefer a normal life, a normal grandmother. So, she launches a Granny make-over, which seems to go well but it isn't long before the little girl realises that she misses her grandmother's eccentric ways and that Granny is now blue.
Corderoy's story is clever and rich, fun and funny. I love the Granny, she's classy and sophisticated, an individual - not your typical witch. The rhymes are great, strong and joyous, they trip off the tongue and always propel the narrative instead of just ticking boxes.
Berger's artwork is a delight. The colour palette is fabulous - very reminiscent of how I remember "Bewitched" or "I Dream of Jeannie" - smudgy greys and charcoals, moody blues and greens and sorbet pinks and purples. I adored the little details; watch out for the movie named on the cinema marquee.
This is a great, warm story with infectious cadence and scintillating illustrations - I'd recommend it as an atmospheric read for Halloween but also as a subtle tale on identity and individuality. And "Whizz, Pop, Granny, Stop!" is just as entertaining.
Thanks for reading,