Lucy’s Book; Lothian, February 2017
Written by Natalie Jane Prior, Illustrated by Cheryl Orsini
A picture book for everyone who has ever known what it is to love a book with all their heart.
Lucy loves to read, but there is one special book that she borrows from the library over and over again. The book is shared with her friends, dropped in the ocean, flown to China and even made into a banana sandwich. But what will Lucy do when her favourite book goes missing?
A Few Early Reviews
You know when you see a book and you really want to read it even before you know anything about it? It captured your eye and instantly you knew it was special? This was how I felt about Lucy’s Book. I knew before I even opened it that I was going to love it, when I opened the package it came in I was beyond excited….I recommend this book for all ages and would love to see this book on the shelves of children all over the world. Little Big Reads
...my new favourite picture book and also my new favourite teaching tool for Kindy-Year Four/Five students, for when I am talking about what a library is, why they are important and how they work. This week alone I’ve read Lucy’s Book to every.single.class who has walked through the door….Lucy’s Book is a book for anyone who adores books, wonders about the journey a book takes in its lifetime and has a fondness for libraries and librarians. Children’s Books Daily
This is bound to be adored by booklovers the world over. 100 Percent Rock Magazine
Pick of the Week This is a heartwarming picture book about a little girl who borrows a book from the library and falls in love with it….The great illustrations move this tale along. Lucy’s Book is a wonderful bedtime story. Manly Daily
Lucy’s Book is my love song to libraries and the printed word; a lifelong obsession that you can read more about in this blog post. It’s about the special relationship between a little girl, her friends, and her very favourite library book, the one she borrows over and over again. On another level, iIt’s also a story about the life of a library book. Many years ago, I spent about five years working as a librarian in a public library, which for a compulsive reader like myself was a fascinating experience. I came out of that time with a healthy respect for the reading habits of the general public, a lot of stereotypes smashed, and a a renewed understanding of how important books are in the lives of many people.
Like anyone who’s ever worked on a circulation desk, I’d always wonder what happened to the books when they went out the door. (Sometimes, as when they came back with toilet-paper bookmarks, one wished one didn’t know.) So, this is where the inspiration for Lucy’s Book came from: it follows the adventures of a single book as it circulates through a community, being passed from child to child, family to family, being, yet returning, over and over again to Lucy.
Cheryl Orsini has done some truly exquisite work for this title. Look at the illustration of the child reading upside down, and ask yourself if you have ever seen a more joyous expression of what it is to be a reader. Or what about this little boy:
or Lucy, being flower girl at her aunt’s wedding, but still unable to take her nose out of her book (boy, would I have got in trouble from my mother if I’d tried that!):
If I had to choose a favourite, however, it would be this beautiful illustration of Li-Ya (who’s based on my beloved niece, Leah Mei Prior) taking the book on holiday with her to China. (I think Leah is likely to get fed up of being put into her aunt’s books: she was the basis for Emma in The Fairy Dancers as well.)
Every page yields new delight. One librarian friend recently told me reading it made her come out in gooseflesh. Let’s hope all the other booklovers out there feel the same.