Book review: A quirky queen and animal magic with Maverick

A quirky queen and animal magic with Maverick
A quirky queen and animal magic with Maverick

Inventive independent publisher Maverick Arts Publishing has two new beautiful picture books to herald the start of the summer holidays.

Maverick is making a name for itself with its entertaining early readers selection and as a champion of new talent in the picture book market. And with plans taking shape for three junior fiction books this autumn, this small outfit is fast galloping into the big time.

Age 2 plus:

Not Enough for Queen Fluff by Rachel Lyon and Catalina Echeverri

The queen of rhyme, Rachel Lyon, returns with a gorgeous cautionary tale about a right royal bunny who has everything she could ever want… except friends.

Lyon, who was born in St Helens, has a wonderful way with words and this new rhyming extravaganza, brought to life by Catalina Echeverri’s gloriously detailed and characterful illustrations, sees the born ‘poetess’ on top form.

‘Queen Fluff was the fanciest bunny in town.

She had servants, a stagecoach and quite a big crown…

She had all the comforts a Queen could afford,

But this Queen was lonely and this Queen was bored.’

Queen Fluff has a spacious, stylish and spotless royal burrow but she longs to take a journey to somewhere new. A trip to see the bunnies in the kingdom seems like a good idea. But her bunnies are poor and can’t afford to play host to a queen who likes everything lavish and clean. And so, instead of bowing to her demands for a ten-course feast, the quick-thinking bunnies get ready to serve up a slice of humble pie!

Lyon works her trademark magic in a story bursting with rhyme, some sound common sense and plenty of giggles as the bunnies fill their burrows with nasty nettles, prickly thistles, stinging bees and wriggly worms to deter their fanciful queen from staying the night.

A fun story with a warm, witty and wise message…

(Maverick, paperback, £6.99)

Age 2 plus:

George and the New Craze by Alice Hemming and Kimberley Scott

Welcome back to the Heavenly Hippos Wildlife Park where George the Giraffe and his animal friends are proving to be a real bunch of cards!

When it comes to friendship, cuddly George triumphs by a neck and his new adventure teaches heartwarming lessons about sharing and caring.

George and the New Craze is the third book in Alice Hemming and Kimberley Scott’s much-loved George the Giraffe and Friends series and provides the same irresistible ‘aah’ factor that has won the hearts of thousands of toddlers.

Here we find the animal friends getting stuck into the new craze at the Heavenly Hippos Wildlife Park... People Cards. George and his pals want to collect them all but Seymour isn’t so sure… he has a rare card and would rather keep it all to himself. It looks like they will have to learn to work as a team if they want to get the full collection!

Alice Hemming, who is passionate about picture books, plays a winning card in this gentle but fun story with a surprise twist in the tail, while illustrator

Kimberley Scott turns the menagerie of animals into quirky, lovable little characters.

Perfect bedtime reading…

(Maverick, paperback, £6.99)