Friday, October 27, 2017

Building Site Zoo book

Building Site Zoo by Sophie Masson, illustrated by Laura Wood (Lothian Children's Books)

I met author Sophie Masson at the Ibby Conference in 2016, and again at the SCBWI conference later that year. She's a prolific author/publisher from the Sydney region. Sophie has mostly written junior fiction and YA stories, as well as five picture books.

Building Site Zoo encourages children to look at an object and then imagine what else it looks like. In this case, vehicles that help on a building site. A bull's charge is compared to a bulldozer, a kangaroo's bouncing up and down to a pneumatic drill (jackhammer), a hippo's round stomach to a concrete mixer and so on. The end line encourages children to liken objects to animals on their walk to kindy or school, too.

Children 4-6 years old will enjoy the story and teachers could also use with middle school children to develop language and imagination. For example, could build on children's imagination of objects looking like animals and use it in a haiku, or to encourage children to use similes and metaphors in their fictional stories.

Born in Jakarta, Indonesia, of French parents, Sophie Masson came to Australia at the age of five. Sophie grew up between worlds, and between languages, an experience which has formed a lot of her work. A bilingual French and English speaker, she was educated in schools in both Australia and France, and has a BA and M.Litt in French and English Literature, and is currently finishing her PhD.

Sophie has had more than 50 novels published in Australia and internationally, mostly for young adults and children. Much of her work for children and young adults has also been in the fantasy genre, but she has also written ghost stories, mysteries, thrillers, family stories and a graphic novel(The Secret Army: Operation Loki). 

Illustrator Laura Wood is currently based in Bristol, U.K., but was born and raised in Italy, and lived in Australia for a number of years. She's completed a Bachelor of Cinema and Multimedia, and while living in Australia, finished a Diploma of Illustration and hasn’t stopped drawing ever since. 

Laura says her illustrations have a sunny style, earthy and pastel tones with a strong sense of narrative. She likes to use textured lines to give a traditional feeling to her digital images. 

ISBN 978-0-7344-1753-4
RRP hardback $26.99, paperback $16.99, e-book $13.99

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