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Carol Thompson

Ten Little Fingers and Ten Little Toes by Mem Fox, illustrated by Helen Oxenbury & Enigma by Graeme Base

February 2009, no. 308

While the children’s picture book is a relatively recent literary phenomenon, most picture book authors still tap into the strong traditions of oral storytelling. Multi-award winning author Mem Fox is particularly good at this. Fox’s picture book texts are firmly grounded in the three R’s – the traditional rhythms, rhymes and repetitions found in children’s songs and verses throughout the ages. This, combined with Judy Horacek’s inspired illustrations, was what made Where is the Green Sheep? (2004) such a success.

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