Kim Gamble & Stephen Axelsen
Allen & Unwin, 2018
32pp., hbk., RRP $A24.99
Tildy hated the night. Night meant sundown. Sundown meant moonlight. Moonlight meant monsters. They sailed in from outside and hid behind the curtains., invisible to anyone but Tildy. No matter how much reassurance she got from her mum and dad, her aunts and uncles and 23 cousins (including the one who told her not to eat spicy food before bedtime) the monsters remained very real and bedtime was nerve-wracking. It’s very hard to sleep with one eye open!
However when Hendrik comes to school and spends his time drawing monsters that he kills with his sword, Tildy finds an ally – someone else who believes in these fearsome creatures of the night. All is well until Hendrik invites her to his house for a sleepover and suggests they can sleep in the garden in his tent…
Adults and children alike are plagued with monsters in their lives, some with shape and from like Tildy’s, others not so tangible but just as scary and threatening, and so the message from this book that there is a way through is important. Little ones who have their own monsters will draw comfort from knowing that they are not alone and may even offer suggestions for how Tildy can relax and enjoy the sleepover before she is faced with her fears.
Lovers of Tashi will adore this latest book from the imaginative mind of Anna Fienberg, the final one from Kim Gamble who became too ill to finish it so his close friend Stephen Axelsen took over. The story of its creation is told in part on the endpages as we bid farewell to Kim, but Megan Daley’s blogpost is just exquisite. Vale Kim Gamble – thank you for all the joy you have brought me, my family and the children in my care over the years.