Review Blog

May 22 2018

Found in Melbourne, a counting adventure by Joanne O'Callaghan

cover image

Ill. by Kori Song. Allen and Unwin, 2018. ISBN 9781760523411
(Age: 4+) Recommended. Themes: Melbourne. Numbers. Also published in Simplified Chinese, this book about Melbourne reflects the visitor's eye looking at a new place, using a map to find their way around, visiting the iconic places that make up that city. Two mid-years children navigate their way past many known landmarks in Melbourne. Carrying an umbrella (it is Melbourne, after all) they begin with the one and only, Luna Park. Setting off for the Concert Hall there are two people on the stage, and three trams are spied along St Kilda Road. Each page is illustrated with a place in Melbourne, and two rhyming lines describe the scene beginning with a number; starting with one for Luna Park, then going sequentially up to 12, Twelve fancy cakes at the Hopetoun Tea Rooms is reached. Thereafter the numbers increase to 100 for the butterflies at Melbourne Zoo, 1000 triangles at Federation Square and 1,000,000 stories in the State Library of Victoria. Melbourne is showcased in this remarkable book for younger readers as the two visitors stroll around the city. They take the tram, walk, ride a bike, take the Puffing Billy, visit the MCG, Art Gallery, Zoo and Concert Hall. Each of the illustrations takes in a view of the place visited, giving an array of detail sure to catch the readers' eyes.
The illustrator, Kori, lives in Hong Kong while the author, Joanne once lived there, now residing in Melbourne. The two share their love of Melbourne in this book, bringing a Chinese perspective to the city and its attractions. At the end of the book, a double page has a thumbnail image of each of the illustrations with a paragraph of information about each of the places depicted in the book.
This would be a most useful book to have in the library for leisure reading, work about cities and tourism and along with the Chinese edition, a worthwhile pair of books to use to promote language study.
Fran Knight

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