Eoin Colfer and Oliver Jeffers, the end.
What more do I need to say?! It was always going to be great … and it really is great!
I’ve been very excited for Imaginary Fred! This is a brilliant story of the life of an imaginary friend called Fred who waits for a human friend who will need him forever. He searches, and searches until one day the conditions are just right …
Colfer has built the story with depth to construct a magical world of friendship. As a picture book, this title has a larger wealth of text than my usual favourites but it is necessary to build the whole lifespan of the characters within. Colfer’s lexis has been poetically crafted to weave together two worlds, both of which are believable and eventually interrogate as one.
Jeffers uses splashes of colour to illuminate the magic within the story. He makes amazing use of white space and his original pencil drawings illustrate the story perfectly. His style fits the context of the piece and reflects Colfer’s words. The main attentions focused on the characters, which is important to the moral of the story, However, sometimes the reader is treated to a beautiful double spread of surrounding environments.
Wanted: picture books for older children
The article talks about readers of ages eight onwards wanting more illustrations in stories aimed at their age. Judoth Kerr has tried to bridge this gap with her new book Mr Cleghorn’s Seal and authors such as Alex T Smith and Chris Riddle (of course!) are really pushing illustrations in modern young fiction. In relation to Imaginary Fred I think the Colfer and Jeffers duo is a great partnership to work on this!