Milo is a beautifully illustrated picture book that brought a smile to our faces, as we followed Milo on his journey of discovery.
Milo is an ordinary dog, living an ordinary life. He has a perfectly acceptable kennel (and it isn’t even on the rough side of town), a part-time job as a messenger, and wonderful friends like Cluffy and Snombo, who (almost) always make him smile. Milo has no real complaints, until one night it gets rather windy and he wakes up to find his kennel has been moved… somewhere else. Gone are his friends, his jobs, the places he knew.
Then Milo meets Carlos, a bird who pauses mid-migration. Carlos loves to walk, and even has a pair of extra comfy shoes. Through his friendship with Carlos, Milo realises that there’s a big world out there, and that there’s even more he can do within his own little world – if he can make it back.
This is a book that is lovely to hold, to turn the pages, to look at. The illustrations and story are by Tohby Riddle, the author of other wonderful kids’ books, such as My Uncle’s Donkey and Nobody Owns the Moon. Books produced by Riddle tend to appeal across the ages and Milo is no exception, with its delightfully sweet sense of humour and the stunning detail in the pictures, a captivating blend of Milo’s home, drawn primarily in sepia tones, and a very real New York cityscape.
It’s a story about friendship (even when friends fight), about learning to leave your comfort zone (especially when you’re forced to), and knowing that you can always come home, although it may look a little different to when you left…
Author Tohby Riddle says Milo came to him while he was sick, struggling to stay awake, and strictly confined to bed. He had nothing to do but think of a new story, and was inspired to write about Milo and his friends. ‘As soon as I was able to’, says Tohby, ‘I got to my desk and had a mock-up of the story within days’.
Tohby likes to both write and draw, and lives in Katoomba, NSW. He has created numerous award-winning picture books, won awards for both literature and book-design and has presented talks and workshops across Australia and overseas. You can learn more about Milo here, and Tohby and his work here.