(Click to enlarge spread.)
Last year, Candlewick Press debuted its first imprint, Templar Books, a partnership with Britain’s Templar Publishing. So far, I’ve been super pleased with what titles Templar/Candlewick has brought to the U.S. market — some really unusual (read: weird…you know I love my weird picture books) stuff and lesser-known author/illustrators. Er, lesser-known to me anyway. And one of those is being featured today: In 2008, Kevin Waldron debuted as an author/illustrator with Mr. Peek and the Misunderstanding at the Zoo, and the first U.S. edition was released this May. I’ve got a couple spreads to show you today so that the art can speak for itself. Don’t you love the ’60s, sort of Inspector Clouseau vibe? Kirkus describes Waldron’s digitally-created art as “a delightful cross between Calef Brown and J. Otto Seibold.”
Every day Mr. Peek, the zookeeper, puts on his favorite jacket and gets ready to do his rounds. However, something isn’t quite right one morning, and one of the jacket’s buttons pops right off. As he self-deprecatingly mutters to himself on each spread—and while passing his beloved animals at the zoo—a misunderstanding of epic proportions brews: The animals assume he’s muttering to them. Subsequently, the hippo thinks he’s getting fat; the penguins, who just finished their breakfast, think all the terrible food they eat will be the end of them; the bear thinks he stinks; those poor giraffes…well, see for yourself:
(Click to enlarge.)
I love it. I mutter insecurities to myself all day, too. How ’bout you guys? I know, I know. Unhealthy. But still. At least I’m not confusing any elephants.
Anyway. And on it goes. Eventually, Mr. Peek, who says things like “Oh, poop!” realizes his mistake and rights it with the animals, though I won’t give too much away in case you want to read it yourself and see more of Waldron’s distinctive art. I look forward to what he’ll bring us next.
(P.S. Kevin, who likes tea and cake very much, has a very fun site with even more art.)
MR. PEEK AND THE MISUNDERSTANDING AT THE ZOO. Copyright © 2008 Kevin Waldron. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Candlewick Press, Somerville, MA.
As a reminder, 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks is a weekly meeting ground for taking some time to reflect on Seven(ish) Exceptionally Fabulous, Beautiful, Interesting, Hilarious, or Otherwise Positive Noteworthy Things from the past week, whether book-related or not, that happened to you. New folks are always welcome.
1). Getting in the mail this week the original art of the image on this page of the blog.
2). Pirate Radio!
3). This book shop, which regular Sunday kicker and my friend, Jill, got to visit — and told me all about. I WANNA GO.
4). Woo hoo! I know what I’m doing November 13th.
5). StoryCorps should have been a kick a long time ago. I love them and want them to hire me. The below video, one of the StoryCorps entries (and animated!), is one of my kicks this week. Thanks to Little Willow for the link.
6). At our local library’s summer reading program finale this week (a big, indoor festival), there was face painting. When my six-year-old requested a giant squid for her face, the teenage volunteer didn’t look at her like she was weird and didn’t say (which I rather expected), “I can’t paint a giant squid.” (Mind you, they’re used to lots of unicorn, kitty, and rainbow requests.) She looked at her and said, “you want a giant squid? I think you might be the coolest kid I’ve ever met.” I wanted to hug her.
Behold the art work:
7). Blueberry pickin’.
BONUS: This fabulousness.
NOTE: Charles Ghigna, a.k.a. Father Goose, has put together a new blog for teachers and librarians to use in their classrooms. There will be a new poem each week for teachers, librarians, parents and kids. It’s here. Enjoy.
What are YOUR kicks this week?