Thursday, June 26, 2014

Book Box Thursday: Purple Paw Prints & Paw Prints on the Magic Sofa by Sarah Mounsey

After a short hiatus, Book Box Thursday is back. This time, we look at two books by Australian Sarah Mounsey who now resides in Singapore. These two books are part of the Paw Prints series, which has won a bronze medal in the Moonbeam Children's Book Awards for best picture book series.

The books we reviewed - Purple Paw Prints and Paw Prints on the Magic Sofa - are the first two books of this series. It tells the funny adventures of a little boy Eddie and his dog Oscar, and the chaos they leave behind wherever they go.

Sarah 1

Both books are illustrated by Jade Fang, who lives in Singapore and is an Illustration graduate from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. Jade started doodling at a young age, and since 2010, has illustrated several children's books. Her illustrations in Purple Paw Prints and Paws Prints on the Magic Sofa are both colourful and whimsical, and brings out the essence of the stories, from mere words to visuals. Even little ones who can't read can easily see the visuals, that is full of life, and understand immediately what is happening in the story. That is the beauty, and strength, of picture books.

Purple Paw Prints
This story is really hilarious and got EV laughing away as we read it. But to me as a parent, I hope so much that this will not happen, especially when the main character Eddie, reminds me of my mischievous AA. Well, I don't think AA will be painting a dog purple. (No no, I hope he doesn't paint anything in the house purple or any colour for that matter.) That's right, Eddie painted his dog Oscar purple, then regretted it, because he realises that his parents will get oh so mad. Too late, he couldn't get the paint off Oscar in any way. So starts an adventure by Eddie and Oscar, together with older sister Mia, to find a solution. From bringing Oscar to the car wash, to enlisting the fire men's powerful water hose, to the hairdresser, nothing seemed to work. But Eddie didn't want to give up and kept thinking of solutions. The story kept EV engaged and wondering whether Eddie will get Oscar back to his original colour white.

Sarah 2

Sarah 3

A funny twist comes at the end, an ending that even readers didn't expect. Just when all seemed lost and Eddie resigned himself to his fate of facing his parents' wrath, Oscar himself comes up with a solution - to paint himself white. So, the dog saves the day.

Sarah 4

This is just such a cute and funny ending. A dog who's the victim of Eddie's mischievous antics saves Eddie, his 'tormentor', from his parents. I like to think that perhaps, Oscar had thought about painting himself white from the beginning, but decided not to reveal his solution until he absolutely had to. Imagine what he could have been thinking: 'Silly human!'. In fact, this story can be used to explain empathy, as I asked EV to imagine how she would feel if she was in Oscar's shoes; would she like to have someone 'torment' her like that, even if it was just for fun? Would it be nice to treat an animal, a pet like that? Very simply, a hilarious tale of a boy’s search for an answer to his mischief turns into a story that can be used to teach about the importance of thinking about others.

Sarah 5

Paw Prints on the Magic Sofa
The second book in the Paw Prints series, this tale brought EV and AA on a magical adventure all around the world, on a magic sofa. It’s quite fun, actually, as we could turn our usual bedtime reading spot - our bed, into a magic bed, and go travelling with Eddie, Oscar, their friend William and several animals, including a lion, a turtle, a camel and a monkey. It exercises our imagination, as like Eddie, Oscar and William, we visited the plains to meet the lion, the desert to find the camel, and over the jungles to search for the monkey. There was even a dip in the river to pick up the turtle.

Sarah 6

Sarah 7

I personally like the way the illustrations depicted the various scenes in the story. From how the magic sofa bobbed on the water, to how it sand boarded down the sand dunes in the desert, to how it flew over the clouds and jungle, the story is very vividly depicted. Even the expressions on the animals are rather cheeky, friendly and endearing.

Sarah 8

Sarah 9

Sarah 10

After the whole adventure, Eddie, Oscar and William return back to reality. As it turns out, the lion, turtle, camel and monkey are soft toys.

Sarah 11

Our verdict
Both books seemed to have different fans in our home. EV preferred Purple Paw Prints, while AA preferred Paw Prints on the Magic Sofa. Different stories, different appeal. Being older, EV could understand the deeper meaning behind Purple Paw Prints, and put herself in the position of Oscar. The imaginary journey that Paw Prints on the Magic Sofa brought us on appealed more to AA, but was well received by EV as well, since we could also go on an adventure of imagination ourselves.

Both books are simple, endearing tales that one can read over and over again.

Giveaway!!!
We have two copies each of Purple Paw Prints and Paw Prints on the Magic Sofa to give away, kindly sponsored by the folks at Closetful of Books. Just follow the Rafflecopter instructions below to enter. Most are optional, but do give you more chances. Good luck!
Terms and conditions:
- Entries that do not fulfill the requirements stated will be disqualified without notice.
- Winners will be notified by email, through the email address provided in the blog comments.
- Winners must confirm by reply email, within three days. Otherwise, a new winner will be picked.
- This giveaway is open to Singapore residents only.
- Giveaway starts on 26 June and ends on 11 July (inclusive) at midnight.
- Winners will be announced on this post and my Facebook page by 14 July.

a Rafflecopter giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway
Disclaimer: We received a copy of Purple Paw Prints and Paw Prints on the Magic Sofa from Closetful of Books for review purposes. No monetary compensation was received. All opinions and images are my own.

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Thank you for reading. If you like this post, please do connect with me on FacebookInstagram and Twitter, so I can share our fun adventures, thoughts and exploits with you. 

13 comments:

  1. Paw prints on the magic sofa looks really interesting with the great illustration. I like the adventures they had while on the sofa.
    ker min
    magixn@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love both books for their colourful graphics! Thanks for hosting the giveaway!

    Waiwai
    mami(at)peipeihaohao(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  3. Having adventures on the magic sofa reminds me of the magic chair that flies around in one of the Enid Blyton's stories. Nostalgic. My 'draw anywhere the crayon can reach' son will love the Purple Paw Prints colourful illustrations. My boys will enjoy both books. Thanks for the giveaway!

    Jingxian
    j_xian@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  4. I think Purple Paw Prints will appeal to my older kid and Paw Prints on Magic Sofa will appeal to my younger boy too!

    Carol Lim
    Cmeilim@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  5. Loving the illustrations in these books. My boy would love looking and reading both books.
    Thanks for the give away.

    Eunice Wee
    nikki_wee@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  6. I love paw prints on magic sofa as the sofa is so magical that it is able to bring the boy and the dog on adventures. Paw prints will be able to teach my child about value - empathy.
    Cynthia Lau
    edenie98@yahoo.com

    ReplyDelete
  7. HI,

    Both the books sounds really interesting.

    In Purple paw I love the message of never give up & at the same time take the responsibility of what you did..
    In Paw print on sofa love the Imagination & illustration...
    Thanks
    Ashmika Jain
    jainash1083@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  8. Love the illustrations and the message behind the book
    Jaime Chan
    chueimei@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  9. Purple paw prints
    - This looks like a pawfect book for young children to join in the fun of predicting what comes next in the plot, and encourages them to expand their imagination. The bold illustrations look wonderful, and compliment the text well.

    Paw Prints on the Magic Sofa
    - Seems like a great sequel adventure to the first book “Purple Paw Prints”; the book is filled with rhyme, and repetition - which is what kids would love to hear.

    (Meiyi - littledetour@hotmail.com)

    ReplyDelete
  10. Both Books seems so interesting and to my kids liking. They love books with colorful picture and can spend hours looking at it. They will be excited to imagine our bed as the magic sofa.
    Celyn Huang
    celyn11@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  11. Love the adventures on the magic sofa, I'm sure my kids will play pretend on the sofa in the living room.

    Serene Leow
    liaoserene@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  12. Both Purple Paw Prints and Paw Prints on the Magic Sofa are pawtastic books!
    I love their bold vibrant illustrations and funny, creative stories.

    Chan Xgg
    chanxgg@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  13. it will be fun to read this to my child, especially since the main character's name is the same as his dad's.

    Li Li
    klif00413@hotmail.com

    ReplyDelete