Catawampus?

Don’t you just love the English language? It is continually evolving and changing to reflect the times. Take for example, fomo, selfie, chillax, guyliner, mankini, twitterati to name just a few.

This morning I opened a box of books and was intrigued by a book titled The Catawampus Cat by Jason Carter-Eaton. It’s a magical story about a peculiar, crooked cat who helps people see things a little differently. On reading the blurb I was surprised to learn that catawampus is a real word dating back to the 1840s and means  “diagonal or at an angle,” “askew, awry, or crooked.” For example, “Mr Gaffney, your tie is catawampus; let me straighten it for you.”

It got me thinking about how much fun it would be to make up some crazy words of my own. What about…

Excelagination: “Colin Thompson’s books show that he has an excelagination.”

Campeachy: “One of Mrs Riding’s favourite holidays is to campeachy.”

Why don’t you make up some new words of your own? Go on. I challenge you.

My Top 5 Australian Picture Books

It’s no secret that I LOVE picture books. They can be beautifully simple yet contain ideas so complex and multi-layered. I have compiled my top 5 all time favourites by Australian authors. No mean feat but here it is!

fox
Fox by Margaret Wild

Rose-Meets-Mr-Wintergarten
Rose meets Mr Wintergarten by Bob Graham

big little
The Big Little Book of Happy Sadness by Colin Thompson

koala
Koala Lou by Mem Fox

milli
Milli Jack and the Dancing Cat by Stephen Michael King

It was hard to leave out The Brothers Quibble by Aaron Blabey, Tanglewood also by Margaret Wild, and The Peasant Prince by Li Cunxin… I could have gone on and on and on…

I was tempted to give you a quick review of each book but instead I’ve featured my top 5 on display in our makeshift library. I want you to find out for yourself why I chose each one. Please read and enjoy!

Do you have a top 5 like me or just one all time favourite? I’d love to hear what it is.

Coming soon: my top 5 picture books by international authors. Look out for books by Anthony Browne, Lynley Dodd, David Cali, David Wiesner, Karin Gruss.