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A Bear Called Sunday

Axel Hacke,  Illustrated by Michael Sowa

Two Germans did this one and although it is about a teddy bear and a little boy, there is no fluffy, sweet saccharine here. I would have to say this is one of my all-out winner stories. A boy questions his relationship with his teddy bear: that's pretty much the whole gist of the tale but there is also a surreal dream that verges on me wondering if my seven-year-old would think the whole thing creepy. Turned out my kid loves it the same amount as I do.

The illustrations are awesome. Truly. I'd put my hand up if this Michael Sowa auditioned for the horror show Married at First Sight, simply because of his illustrations. Of course the illustrations would not be what they are without the story and Hacke and Sowa make a terrific team. They have done a couple of other picture books together, which I now must hunt down.

This is the sort of book I'd want to give an adult as a present, not caring if they liked picture books or not. If I was wealthy, I'd also invest in a Sowa original.

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