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Tales from the 100 Hectare Wood - Book Review

Every now and then an idea blossoms. Some long tailed field mice hitched a ride with artist, Jane Deerson, while she and her sister Sue were on a road trip from Canberra to Perth. Jane decided to use her imagination and skills as an artist and put the experience to good use.



And the Longtail family of field mice and the Tales from the 100 Hectare Wood were born.

Evie and Chelsea are joined in a series of three adventures by brothers Max and Leo. Their cousins, Alex and Robert, are in for some fun too.

The first book in the series, Evie and Chelsea’s Big Trip, tells of an unexpected road trip for a couple of mice (Evie and Chelsea) who stowed away in a human’s car at the 100 Hectare Wood campground, near the Longtail family home. Was it the disaster it might have been?

Of course, the reader will decide if the girls were adventurous or mischievous!

While winter comes every year, snow is a rare treat in the 100 Hectare Wood. When it does fall, the field mouse children take full advantage. Of course, where there are four youngsters together something is bound to happen. Particularly when Max and Leo are about.

In the third of the series, The Big Blue Boat, cousins Robert and Alex pay a visit. Boys and boats. What could possibly happen?

Artist & Author
Jane Deerson
Jane Deerson

Jane Deerson is well known as an artist in the Snowy Mountains region where she lived for many years. Her love of Mother Nature's children and the places they call home was nurtured as she grew up in England and Wales. Her move to Australia captured her imagination. And it shows.

A self-taught artist, Jane works in a range of media including oils, acrylics and water colours. Over the years, she has developed her interests to include writing. The tales are a continuation of her journey.

The stories are beautifully illustrated. The reproduction of Jane’s original watercolour drawings by graphic designer, Justin May, is bright, colourful and eyecatching. The images will hold the interest of even the youngest reader. The text is word rich without being difficult and the humour is easy to enjoy. They offer a rewarding reading experience for younger children, parents and grandparents.

Who can't remember being snuggled up to Mum or Dad as the words flowed and the imagination ran wild? Or the joy of a bedtime story to help you dream?

The characters are all named after Jane’s children and grandchildren, and it’s not hard to imagine your own childhood and how it could be you instead of Evie, Chelsea, Max, Leo, Alex or Robert! Or perhaps Aunt Julie or Farmer Pete.

Initially self-published, the books make an ideal gift. They are available online through Jane’s web page, JD Designs (www.JDDesigns.net.au )  or accross business (www.accross.com.au ) .

The value of Children’s books is well documented and in a world where technology is pervasive and where children’s entertainment often has aggressive undertones, it is pleasing to find the art of gentle story telling hasn’t been lost.

Highly Recommended.

Kieran May - Supports Artists & Authors

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