Mr Owliver’s Magic at the Museum. Caroline Bracken

5 stars for this wonderful picture book.

As someone who works in an integrated library, museum and art gallery, I was keen to read this children’s book about Mr Owliver’s job at Animaltown Art Museum. I was not disappointed, as Caroline Bracken has written and illustrated a really delightful book that children and the adults reading to them will thoroughly enjoy.

Since this is a world of animals with no humans, the artwork that Mr Owliver looks after features paintings such as the Mona Lizard, and The Adoration of the Magpies, while painters include Pigasso and Catisse: this book is crammed with puns and the reworked paintings are wonderfully done. The illustration is beautiful throughout the book and the story is interesting and magical for children to follow.

The reason this lovely book gets the full 5 stars from me is for the post-story pages, which in only two pages show what the 14 original paintings look like, along with the title, artist and gallery where each is to be found. Each entry even has a short sentence of information or interpretation. This is followed by a two-page art history timeline. All of this means that this book is an amazing art history resource as well as a gorgeous picture book with a sweet storyline.

I received this ebook free from NetGalley and Schiffer Publishing. UK publication date: 12 September 2017.

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