Thursday, 19 September 2013

Little Boy with a Big Horn by Jack Bechdolt, illustrated by Aurelius Battaglia

Little Boy with a Big Horn is a 1950 little golden book classic that was recently re-released with new illustrations by Dan Yaccarino. A little boy named Ollie is the one with the big horn and though he loves to play, alas he only knows one song.  His playing is deemed a nuisance by the local townsfolk and Ollie heads off to the fields in search of a place where he can practice in peace.  He's quickly moved on by a farmer, and so he decides to use his rowboat to take his music out to sea. Whilst at sea he realises a passenger ship is danger of crashing into the rocks in the thick fog. He decides to play his one song as a warning and manages to save the ship and everyone aboard. Ollie is renamed a hero and instantly revered by the town.  And his reward for this deed? Funds to attend music school outside of town.

E loves to retell the bit where the ship's captain whips out his telescope to see what's making all that racket (Ollie), and we always spend a minute or two talking about the instruments pictured on the final page.

 The original version is a classic that features artwork from Auerlius Battaglia. I've not had a chance to see Dan Yaccarino's version but I'm a huge fan of his work and I imagine it's a real treat!

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