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This issue’s cover is from a stunning new picture book, Mary’s Secret by David McKee (Andersen Press, 0 86264 909 9, £9.99). An ecological fable about doing without cars, McKee’s story with its bright pictures full of well observed detail is set within Mary’s cheerful family and at her school. His bold, painterly illustrations use the page so confidently and dextrously that their quirky, decorative perspectives seem entirely natural. Thanks to Andersen Press for their help in producing this September cover.
Twm and Gwyneth’s twins are beautiful boys, and one evening when Gwyneth must go to a neighbour for milk, the fairies come and steal Ifan, the fair one, and leave a changeling in his place. In this beautifully written Welsh fairy story, love conquers all, and lfan and the changeling are returned to their rightful places. There is magic in both text and illustration, where the comforting ordinariness of family life is surrounded by the mysterious grey fairy world, replete with grotesque goblins, elves and sprites. Quality leaps from every page. An outstanding picture book.