I came across Outside on the CBCA Shortlist this year, and was intrigued. The cover looked so pretty, and I had just come across illustrator Rita Voutila on another shortlisted work, The Stone Lion (see my review). Also, Libby Hathorn is a big name in Australian children's books, and I've only read a few of her less well known books.
Outside is an ode to the wonders of playing outside, the adventures that can be had, the sights, the smells, the fun. All the simple joys of playing outside, of spending time outside told in a repetitive, cumulative text.
The illustrations are dazzling. Almost kaleidoscopic. With a kind of Alice in Wonderland vibe. So pretty. I do wonder though if digital illustrations are ironic in a book extolling the virtues of being outside? Although I guess if they were drawn or painted these would have been created inside too.
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