Virginia Wolf by Kyo Maclear & Isabelle Arsenault

11218823_10153241082505446_615826251917784299_nFrom the dynamic duo who brought us ‘SPORK’, comes a very different but equally as clever offering from Kyo Maclear and Isabelle Arsenault.

A tale of two very different sisters, loosely based on the relationship between author Virginia Woolf and her sister, painter Vanessa Bell, ‘Virginia Wolf’ is an uplifting story for all ages.

Vanessa is a happy-go-lucky little girl, whilst Virginia wakes up in the most dreadful mood, but thanks to determination, love, creativity and imagination, that dreadful mood is eventually lifted.

11031031_10153241082680446_599381115639462491_nThis wonderful tale begins with Virginia “waking up feeling wolfish. She made wolf sounds and did strange things.”

With stark, black and white illustrations and raw, jagged, hand-lettered pages, the dark mood of Virginia is abundantly evident.

11025737_10153241082585446_496535088328338827_nIt takes a while for Virginia’s mood to break, but thanks to the unrequited love of her sister, a little artwork and their vivid imaginations, Virginia and Vanessa are transported to their wonderful world, ‘Bloomsberry’.

The juxtaposition of Arsenault’s mixed-media illustrations, from the stark black and white spreads to the subtle, gentle introduction of colour, to the final spreads which hold an explosion of colour, are cleverly integrated to the story to match the mood of Virginia.

11052427_10153241082630446_2337208350491256704_nMaclear’s uplifting story gently highlights girlish blues, the abundant differences between sisters and the all too healing power of art.

It’s clear to see why this is an award-winning story and if you are not aware of the original story of Virginia Wolf, this won’t deter your enjoyment of such an simple, heart warming story.

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