We have been asking children’s writers, illustrators, lecturers and journalists:
‘Are picture books for children, or adults can enjoy them just as much?’
Below you will find more answers:
Picture books are ONLY for people whose imagination, humor, compassion, love and understanding outweigh the moments they’ve spent here on earth.
* Chris is an author/illustrator of children’s picture books.
children and adults have opportunities to discuss and share their insights
Picturebooks can be for all age groups. Some are actually not really suitable for very young children because of the serious subject matter. Take Armin Greder’s The Island or My Hiroshima by Junko Morimoto or The Composition by Antonio Skarméta. Some picturebooks can be enjoyed on many levels by all age groups: books like The Three Robbers by Tomi Ungerer or Yellow Bird, Black Spider by Dosh and Mike Archer, for instance. And some, like Orange, Pear, Apple, Bear by Emily Gravett or This is the Bear by Sarah Hayes and Helen Craig are particularly good for little children. Adult readers have much more prior knowledge than children so can experience a book like Sam and Dave Dig a Hole by Mac Barnet and Jon Klassen, or I am Henry Finch by Alexis Deacon and Viviane Schwartz, in a different way to how a child might approach the story. However children often see details in images that text-focused adults might miss. And children often make wholly original meaning by bringing insights to the narrative from their particular vantage points. The important element – in my opinion – is that children and adults have opportunities to discuss and share their insights.
- Mary is an author and educator.
There’s no age limit on the pleasure and learning that picture books can give us
Picture books are universal. Into a few pages, some carefully crafted words and images, they distil truth. There’s no age limit on that, or on the pleasure and learning that picture books can give us. The limit is on whether we choose to listen.
* Joe is a writer
adults have a deep love and appreciation for picture books
From my experience, adults have a deep love and appreciation for picture books. Partly based on nostalgia and partly based on a genuine cultural interest. Be it the humour factor , the implicit messages or the artistic beauty.
- Joanna is in charge at children’s books section at Watersones Picadilly London
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- Read Jackie Morris’s answer here.
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- Read Pippa Goodhart’s answer here.
- Read Nicolette Jones’s answer here
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- Read Bridget Marzo’s answer: here
- Read Zoe Toft’s answer: here
- Read Ehsan Abdollahi’s answer: here
- Read Celestine and the Hare’s answer here.
- Read Frank Cattrell-Boyce’s answer here.
- Read Emmi Smid’s answer here.
- Read Tamsin Rosewell’s answer here
- Read Anahita Teymorian’s answer here
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- Read Chris Meade’s answer here
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- Read Kenilworth books’ answer here
- Read Eric Heyman’s answer here
- Read Robyn Ridley’s answer here
- Read Abi Elphinstone’s answer here