Friday 30 November 2012

ReadItDaddy previews "The Cautionary Tale of the Childe of Hale" by Rachel Lyon and Vanina Starkoff (Released 31st January 2013 by Maverick Books)

Now here's something decidedly different from Maverick Books. An eye catching and truly beautiful book from Rachel Lyon and Vanina Starkoff, based on the true story of The Childe of Hale, an actual giant that lived in the Liverpool area a long long time ago (his portrait (see below) hangs in Brasenose College) and you can find out more about him here. 

The gentle giant, the Childe of Hale has a fairly ordinary and sometimes miserable life. He's so tall that his legs stick out of the windows of his humble little cottage (and get soaking wet when it rains). He can't find trousers that fit, or shoes, but he's a marvel to all who meet him.

When the king comes to town, the Childe of Hale is dragged to meet him by his best friend, and the king is so impressed that he begs the giant to come back to London with him to meet the Queen.

The lure of the big city, and the chance to rub shoulders with royalty prove too much for The Childe of Hale, and soon he's speeding towards the capital in a carriage.

Life takes a different turn, and for a while the finery and furnishings turn the Childe of Hale's head to what the good life must really be like. But is their happiness in his future? You'll have to read the book and find out when it arrives on shelves on 31st January 2013.

It's such a gentle, delightful and really different looking children's book. The artwork almost feels like medieval illuminated manuscript work (which goes quite neatly with the original portrait) but it's the story and the rather touching relationship between the giant and the Princess who befriends him that gives this children's tale a quite unique approach.

Look out for it, it's definitely shaping up to be something special.

Charlotte's best bit: The giant's feet sticking out of his windows. Poor giant!

Daddy's favourite bit: The book triggered a voyage of discovery to find out a bit more about John Middleton, the actual Childe of Hale. Quite a fascinating read.

(provided to us as a preview PDF by Maverick Books. We may review this properly again when it is released)