Some time ago I introduced a friend and old colleague of mine - Raymond McGrath - with his exquisitely illustrated book The Great Rescue Race. It gives me great pleasure to feature Ray again, this time with his newest book It's Not a Monster, It's Me!
Life is not easy for Sebastian. No one wants to sit next to him in class, read stories with him, eat their lunch with him, or play games with him; he just looks too scary.
Now, meet Alex:
She sees the world a little differently to her classmates.
It's Not a Monster, It's Me! is a truly delightful story about a monster named Sebastian...
who has more than a little difficulty making friends.
Now, meet Alex:
And one day Alex does something unTHINKable!
Alex's daring move leads to some entertaining scenes (including a very endearing emotional response from Sebastian) that conclude in a very satisfying, circular way. It's Not a Monster, It's Me! is, in my opinion, Ray's best book yet and a huge achievement. Ray combines the strengths that come from his background in traditional hand-drawn animation with the modern digital age to create beautiful, detailed illustrations. All the illustrations begin on paper in the old-fashioned way, but are finished digitally using multiple layers to create depth and texture. The end result is very appealing, and I think this book is something special - it has that rare magical combination of being extremely well written and skillfully illustrated. It also has a very important lesson within it, told in a delightful way.
My daughter, who at nearly four, is obsessed with monsters, takes great pleasure in this book and loves the Sing along with Sebastian CD that is included - yes, Ray is one those people that gives everything a go! It's great fun, and adds even more charm to the very likable Sebastian. Ray is working on a music video too. It’s going to be an old-school style, handmade paper cut-out, stop motion extravaganza…I absolutely can't wait to see it! If you would like to learn more about Ray and see more of his never-ending talents, head over to his website TheOneTrickPony. It appears this guy doesn't sleep?
ISBN 13: 9780143505525
ISBN 10: 0143505521
Published: 26 Sep 2012
A huge thanks to Ray and Penguin Books (NZ) for allowing Kitty as a Picture to review this book.