Celebrating the awesomeness of picture books!

“Picture Book Book Club is all about celebrating the awesomeness of picture books and why they are so important not only for children but for all ages. We do this through Twitter chats, guest author appearances, blog posts and by reading picture books.  All are welcome from librarians, teachers, authors to general enthusiasts, so if you’re a lover of picture books join our next discussion!”

picbookbc blog

In February 2017 the Picture Book Book Club launched into the world with the announcement of our very first monthly Twitter chat celebrating and discussing Aussie Picture Books. On Thursday 2 March 2017, our special guest was Damon Young, author of My Brother is a Beast, My Sister is a Superhero, My Pop is a Pirate and My Nanna is a Ninja – all brilliant picture books. The illustrator of these picture books, Peter Carnavas, also wrote a fantastic blog post leading up to the chat called The Rich Dessert of Australian Picture Books.

After seven months and seven chats we have been lucky enough to have some of Australia’s finest picture book authors and illustrators join us for lively discussions.

  • March 2017 – Aussie Picture Books with Damon Young
  • April 2017 – Illustrations in Picture Books with Anna Walker
  • May 2017 – National Simultaneous Storytime with Tony Wilson
  • June 2017 – Animals in Picture Books with Katherine Battersby
  • July 2017 – Indigenous Picture Books with Dub Leffler
  • August 2017 – Picture Books that Celebrate Friendship with Gus Gordon
  • September 2017 – Beach Themed Picture Books with Kylie Howarth

The Picture Book Book Club team is made up of four young Queensland library professionals – Nicola McGeown, Ashleigh McKergow, Rob Allen and Amy Walduck (that’s me!). In Nicola’s words, this is how the club started:

“I was questioned last year about why I borrow so many picture books when I’m not taking them home to children. This question got me thinking: Are there more people like me? (I hope so!). I’m going to find them and start a sensational picture book book club! I was determined to connect with other adults who appreciate the greatness of picture books and who recognise that these books have something important to say to people of all ages. I also wanted to start a club that connected staff across all library spectrums who use picture books as an important tool and resource in their job. After months of planning with my three amazing team members, it was decided that once a month we were going to party picture book style! And it was going to be awesome!”

I have really enjoyed working on this project with the team and I have learnt a lot along the way. You see, I knew nothing about picture books when we started! Nothing! But the rest of my team have those expertise in spades and I had other skills to contribute like social media, marketing and networks. I’m learning about and appreciating picture books more and more every month and genuinely enjoying the change of pace to other areas of my career. You can read more about the club, revisit the chats and read guest blog posts at www.picturebookbc.wordpress.com

My favourite picture book (so far!) is Herman and Rosie by Gus Gordon! Set in New York, this gorgeous picture book is a story about friendship, life in the big city, and following your dreams. This is a tale about a big city. It’s a tale of hotdogs and music and the summertime subway breeze. It’s a tale of singing on rooftops and toffees that stick to your teeth. But most of all, it’s the tale of Herman and Rosie.

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