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Illustrators/authors like Shirley Hughes?

(27 Posts)
letsgooutstiiiiiiide Wed 10-Apr-19 09:00:41

DS (2.5) has a massive crush on Alfie, Annie Rose, Lucy & Tom. I am happy enough reading the entire available Shirley Hughes canon day in, day out, as i like them too... but we're going to need more at some point. We are working our way through everything else Hughes has done too, though Katie & Olly et al. are very much not as compelling as Alfie/ Lucy & Tom.

Can anyone suggest anything similarly beautifully illustrated and comfortingly "normal"*?

*I appreciate that Hughes' "normal" is very white, middle-class, privileged, etc - and will do what I can to give DS books that include other "normals". At 2.5 though, I think Alfie is all the complexity he really wants.

letsgooutstiiiiiiide Wed 10-Apr-19 09:05:09

His other favourite illustrator is Beatrix Potter. Unfortunately he finds the stories insufferably boring, but loves looking at the pictures. He also likes field guides. So he likes realistic illustration, which seems hard to find in little children's books. I remember there being more around when I was young (stuff probably written in the 1960s or early 1970s) but can't remember what any of it was called...

Witchend Thu 11-Apr-19 17:13:06

Kim Lewis

Fantasticl illustrations, and well thought out. "The Last train" is hauntingly beautiful too.

missyB1 Thu 11-Apr-19 17:17:15

Judith Kerr books such as her Mog collection. Also check out Sarah Garland.

BikeRunSki Thu 11-Apr-19 17:22:53

The Katie Morag books are similar-ish and also probably better for 4/5/6 year olds.
The illustrations are not as perfectly detailed, and the characters are still largely white. The stories are set on a Scottish Island, so the family’s day to day lives are somewhat different to those of Shirley Hughes’ characters. The illustrations are still drawings rather than cartoons though.

thatwouldbeanecumenicalmatter Thu 11-Apr-19 17:24:50

We love Alfie here too! Ezra Jack Keats series of books (he's won lots of children's literary awards) , the Snowy Day and A Letter For Amy are lovely relatable books for little ones.

BendydickCuminsnatch Thu 11-Apr-19 17:28:37

Ahhhhh Shirley Hughes is the best 😍 I want a house in the same state of comforting disarray as Alfie’s, but mine just looks dirty not comforting 😄

Stuckforthefourthtime Thu 11-Apr-19 17:37:32

Rosemary Wells has similarly homely (slightly privileged) stories and rabbits instead of children, so might win on all fronts? Ds2 loved Shirley Hughes and also Felix Feels Better by Wells.

Do you buy books or go to the library? I have found trips to the library the best bet for Ds2 especially who preferred books about real children and hated Elmer etc, it's easy to see from the front what the overall look and feel is ..

SunnySomer Thu 11-Apr-19 17:40:06

The Little Red Train books by benedict blathwaite have beautiful detailed illustrations that you can look at and talk about for ages. My DS really loved them at that age

applesauce1 Thu 11-Apr-19 17:40:54

My Naughty Little Sister by Dorothy Edwards (illustrates by Shirley Hughes).
I read it to my class every year and it's always very popular. The Father Christmas chapter is my favourite and always gets a great collective gasp out of the kids.

TheGrey1houndSpeaks Thu 11-Apr-19 17:41:28

Definitely Sarah Garland. The illustrations are gorgeous.

letsgooutstiiiiiiide Sun 14-Apr-19 03:06:49

Thankyou everyone! Will go find some Sarah Garland (I think I went past one at Playgroup the other day), and Rosemary Wells should be good too (i'd forgotten about her). I also rediscovered Molly Brett and Racey Helps, mainstays of my very young trips to visit my grandmother, so bought a couple of the ones I remember as sadly they're not in the library.

I also realised (though haven't yet followed it up) that a useful searching mechanism would be to find out who illustrated older children's books (eg Noel Streatfeilds) a generation ago, and find out if they did anything in picture books for younger children. DS likes those sorts of illustrations, completely lifelike pen and ink - as per Shirley Hughes and Beatrix Potter - so much more than the more cartoonish stuff (which is a pity as e.g. he isn't massively keen on Alison Lester).

We go to the library every week and permanently have at least one card maxed out (30 books)... but they're a bit better for slightly older children - most of the good stuff is not quite comfort-material enough for DS.

letsgooutstiiiiiiide Sun 14-Apr-19 03:09:52

We have kim Lewis and Katie Morag books at playgroup - will look out the Kim Lewis ones. Katie Morag is probably a little bit old for him in that there are subtexts and context that he won't understand yet, though I look forward to getting into them in a year or so, as they are lovely.

letsgooutstiiiiiiide Sun 14-Apr-19 03:12:22

Ah. Turns out Shirley Hughes did the Noel Streatfields I had in mind!

Krimpy Sun 14-Apr-19 03:18:27

Brambly Hedge and the Foxwood Tales. They have the most detailed and sumptuous illustrations.

MrsPworkingmummy Sun 14-Apr-19 03:23:15

Judith Kerr has a very, very similar style to Shirley Huges. 'The Tiger Who Came to Tea' was one of my daughter's favourite books and is a text I'll certainly be sharing with our baby soon in future. Gorgeous illustrations and a reminder of when life was much more simple...

letsgooutstiiiiiiide Sun 14-Apr-19 03:30:36

Oh yes, Brambly Hedge!!! I had forgotten it. He will ADORE them.

So far we have had no luck with either the Tiger or Mog. The illustrations are that bit more stylized and for some reason he just doesn't take to them.... I try all the time at playgroup as they have tons of Mog and Tiger, including the local-language version of Tiger that gets read aloud at morning tea at least once a week. I feel a bit bad as I know they're classics but he just doesn't like them! Plenty of time for tastes to change I guess...

Cornishblues Mon 15-Apr-19 17:25:50

We like emma Chichester clark’s ‘love is my favourite thing’. Some of the ahlbergs’ might fit the bill - peepo, each peach and the baby catalogue were favourites but the latter is really for youngest age group. Helen Oxenbury too.

letsgooutstiiiiiiide Wed 17-Apr-19 01:35:15

I should look up more Helen Oxenbury - we have Bear Hunt (and the film thereof). DS' favourite book until he was about 18 months old was Peepo - we have the Jolly Postman and Each Peach, but I think he finds them enigmatic as they rely on knowledge of fairytales that we haven't yet effectively inculcated. Will look up Clark, too. Thanks!

letsgooutstiiiiiiide Thu 18-Apr-19 02:22:07

Cicely Mary Barker - flower fairies illustrator - turns out to have done other stuff too. DS spotted a book of fairy stories ilustrated by her at the library and said "want that one". She is kind of the Beatrix Potter of being able to draw humans (BP's humans are always just that bit less good than the animals!).

Ricekrispie22 Sat 20-Apr-19 11:55:48

Also have a look for My Naughty Little Sister.
Old Bear and other books by Jane Hissey always remind me of Shirley Hughes for some reason.
He might enjoy Percy the Park Keeper.

Booklover123 Sat 25-May-19 11:10:30

I second the Percy the park keeper series of books

HollowTalk Sat 25-May-19 11:14:48

I am jealous of you! I loved that time of my children's life.

IHeartKingThistle Sat 25-May-19 11:18:30

Aw bless him. My DS was the same, just wanted stories with pictures of real people doing real things.

Some of the illustrated Paddington stories might work (I know it's a talking bear but the rest of it is people!)

barleysugar Sat 25-May-19 11:21:21

We love Babette Cole- esp the Silly/Slimy books!

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