I was fortunate enough to obtain a copy of Rich & Rare, a collection of short stories, poetry & illustrations by varied and talented Aussie authors & illustrators (Most illustrations are by the talented Paul O’Sullivan while Mac McBride has also illustrated for his short story).
The first wohoo moment was when I opened the envelope and saw the brilliant cover design. The second was when I recognised so many of the authors (I instantly knew I was in for a treat). The third – and this is biggie – was the size of the collection. It runs at over 500 pages while each short story is few thousand words (give or take) in other words, perfect train-ride or lunch-break reading. You get to finish an entire story & I love that. And I wasn’t disappointed with the stories either!
A collector of computer games, a knitting needle ninja, a violin that comes to life, a cat with many names, a love that cannot be bought, a prince who finds a friend, an alien invasion…
Welcome to a world of ‘beauty rich and rare’, a world of natural (and unnatural) gifts on every page – from humour to horror, thriller to fantasy – encompassing the past, the present and the future.
Our ‘young and free’ creators include: Michael Gerard Bauer, Gary Crew, Justin D’Ath, Scot Gardner, Kerry Greenwood, Libby Hathorn, Leigh Hobbs, Sofie Laguna, Kirsty Murray, James Roy, Shaun Tan and Gabrielle Wang.
Given the age-group is listed as 11+ the stories tend toward the lighter side and while I have a personal taste for the darker stuff, I found myself happily smiling at the wonderful wordsmiths within each story.
NOTE: I have only read half the stories thus far (and all the poetry) because honestly, this is such a perfect train travel collection that I find myself always saving *the next story* for my train rides to the city. Having said that, thus far there is not one story I wouldn’t recommend and also think these are the kinds of stories parents could share with their children.
With regard to the collection of poetry. As someone who likes things on the darker side, and as someone who has had pieces published in the past, for my taste, I would have liked to see a few darker ones; however, given the age category, the genre of the poems is appropriate and could even be a great way to introduce younger readers to poetry – always a good thing 🙂
The illustrations are stunning, fun and give the eye a rest from just words. The combination of authors is a credit to Australia and Ford Street Publishing, ( http://www.fordstreetpublishing.com/ford/ )
and Paul Collins has done a brilliant job in editing.
Rich & Rare is just that, and highly recommended by me 4.5 stars!
You can get yourself a copy of Rich & Rare via Ford Street Publishing here:
And while you’re there, take a look at the brilliant list of novels available. I recently reviewed Michael Hyde’s Footy Dreaming and am making time to read Vol 4,5,6 of the Warlock Series, (review to come once I’ve read all six but honestly, if you’re got a tween or teen who likes fantasy & likes to read – even a little – this series would make an ideal Christmas Stocking gift, but buy at least two at a time ‘cos your kids will devour them!) & next on my list is Adam Wallace’s ‘The Vanilla Slice Kid’ – also a great Christmas present for a young reader. Ford Street is also the publisher of ‘Celia and Nonna’ by Victoria Lane, illustrated by Kayleen West, as well as many other amazing works.
And come back next week – I have news & some fun for Picture Book and middle Grade writers!