Friday, 27 September 2013

ReadItDaddy's Book of the Week - Week ending 27th September 2013 - "Walking your Octopus" by Brian Kesinger (Baby Tattoo Books)

Walking Your Octopus
Written and Illustrated by
Brian Kesinger

Published by Baby Tattoo

You may not yet know who Victoria Prismal is, but I guarantee that you're going to love her. Some of you canny app-folk may have already spotted her in the fabulous iPad version of "Walking your Octopus" (which we raved about a little while ago) If so, you'll also know that she has a rather special pet, Otto (the octopus). Splicing together steampunkery with a goodly dose of fabulous Victorian costume, Brian Kesinger's "Walking your Octopus" was always set to wow us in book form but, phew, what a book. Set out as a super-wide sumptuously presented and etched hardback it's the sort of book that makes you want to cuddle it. We're always slightly in awe of books that look as good as this, simply because your first reaction to them is to want to wrap them back up in plastic and store them away somewhere so that they don't get grubby or damaged. Truth is though, that's not what books are for is it, so we dove straight in.

"Walking your Octopus" presents a handy reference guide for would-be Cephalopod owners. Detailing in exquisite illustrated detail how best to look after your Octopus, what they eat, how to train them and - er - how to clean up those messy ink stains when they get a little over-excited, Victoria and Otto are the most charming hosts.

We cackle with laughter as Otto sees off Victoria's would-be suitors (warning - When you see an Octopus turn red, it's NOT because it's embarrassed!) or play happily together on a swing made from one of Otto's elastic limbs.

I admitted last time we looked at this in app form that I had a huge crush on Victoria (and yes, once again we probably should point out that she has a heck of a range of quite stunning outfits, some of which are rather saucy). Otto is rather lovely too of course, and it's amazing how Kesinger bestows him with a myriad expressions as we learn a little more about him throughout the book.

"Walking your Octopus" by Brian Kesinger. Octo-lovely!

There are some great Cthulhu-esque nods here, in fact it's pretty much perfect. Entertaining and funny text accompaniment to the sort of illustrations you'd give your eye-teeth to be able to reproduce if you're in any way artistic, "Walking your Octopus" is a real keeper and one to truly treasure.

Charlotte's best bit: Otto is very handy (or should that be tentacle-ey) at bathtimes!

Daddy's Favourite bit: Just loved the bit where Otto is seeing off those rotten suitors. Squeeze 'em good, boy!

(Kindly sent to us for review by Baby Tattoo)