Review — Ollie and Me 1 2 3

Olly and Me 1 2 3
Shirley Hughes
Candlewick, hardcover, July 2009
Picture Book

Shirley Hughes’ familiar illustrations populate this counting book which also serves as a vehicle for young Kate to tell readers all about her family, including younger brother Olly, and friends. “There are four people in our family. When we go out, we usually take our dog, Buster, too, and that makes five. Buster likes to chase birds but he never catches any.”

The page layout places the featured number (1-10) written at the top of the page; next to it are large colored dots with the number of dots matching the number. On a double-page spread are multiple examples of the number in words and illustrations, such as “Three is company.” What I love about Hughes’ art is that it’s messy and expressive and full of motion, showing us happy animals and people in the everyday. It’s kids being kids and her language is just like listening to kids. Following the number 10 she writes
“Some things are too many to count –
Like blossoms falling from a tree
Or raindrops into a puddle . . .
Or flowers in the springtime
Or clouds in the sky going up and up . . .
Numbers go on forever.”

Thanks to Candlewick Press for supplying a review copy.

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