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Sandcastles, Seaweed and Simple Pleasures: Review of A Trip to the Beach by Gwyn Perkins

October 29, 2019

A Trip to the Beach is the last instalment in the beloved and award-winning Iggy and Grandad series by Gwyn Perkins.

This time Iggy is off to the beach with grandad, and the plan is that Iggy will catch his first wave. First, they leave the city, and as they get closer to the beach there’s flowers, grass and then the sea. On arrival Iggy, a bit too excited, plunges into the sea only to experience being dumped by a wave but grandad is close by. There’s beachcombing, sandcastles and seaweed followed by the mandatory fish and chips for lunch.

Little readers will love exploring the beach with Iggy and grandad, reminded of the times that they have visited. For parents it’s a chance to slow down and reflect on the simple pleasures found on a visit to the beach.

Hitting the bookshops and libraries in perfect timing for summer, this book celebrates long Australian summer days spent at the beach and the iconic things that go along with this, sandcastles and catching waves and kayaking. It’s also about independence and managing to do things on your own for the very first time with the loving encouragement from a grandparent who knows that Iggy can achieve what he sets his mind to.

The illustrations are exquisite with coastal yellows and blues, creating a sense of calm and contemplation. A combination of watercolours and sketches along with little details such as birds, shells and rockpools creates interest and leads you through their adventure.

Perkins’ first picture book as author-illustrator, A Walk in the Bush, was named Picture Book of the Year by the Children’s Book Council of Australia. In this equally beautiful picture book, he encourages a slow contemplative walk through the bush and A Trip to the Beachcontinues with this theme of exploration and adventure in the everyday.

Gwyn Perkins obviously has a love of animals and spending time with little people. The series was first inspired by his own grandchild although Iggy (who is actually a cat) can easily represent any little reader who chooses to have a day at the beach.

If you’re looking for a special gift for your grandchild then the set of A Trip to the Beach, A Walk in the Bush and A Day at the Show would be perfect – they will no doubt be on high rotation at bedtime or over the summer break when we can all put our feet up and take the time to enjoy a long summer day.

Purchase a copy of A Trip to the Beach by Gwyn Perkins

Born in Melbourne in 1942, Gwyn Perkins began his artistic career when he won a newspaper drawing prize of one guinea and a box of paints (mistakenly awarded to Miss Gwyn Perkins). In 2018, Gwyn’s first picture book in his Iggy and Grandad series, A Walk in the Bush, won the Children’s Book Council of Australia’s Picture Book of the Year Award.

Gwyn spent many years as a successful animator in the advertising industry before moving to an island north of Sydney to enjoy a slower pace. He spends his days drawing, sailing and doing odd jobs for his friends and family. Gwyn has two adult sons and lives with his wife and teenage daughter.

 

 

 


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