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Randolph Caldecott's Picture Books

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Randolph Caldecott's Picture Books
By Randolph Caldecott. (Huntington Library Press, San Marino, CA: 2008. Pg. 236. 64 Color Illustrations.) ISBN 13: 978-0-87328-223-9.

Reviewed by Auggie Moore - November 5, 2007

Randolph Caldecott's Picture Books is a stunning collection of nine of Randolph Caldecott's best loved children's picture books. The nine stories in this collection are: The House That Jack Built, The Diverting History of John Gilpin, Sing a Song of Sixpence, The Three Jovial Huntsmen, The Farmer's Boy, The Queen of Hearts, The Milkmaid, Hey Diddle Diddle, and Baby Bunting.

Randolph Caldecott (1846-1886) was a famous, Victorian era, British book illustrator who is best known for his children's picture books. The nine books in this one volume collection contain facsimiles of these nineteenth-century books, which are part of the Huntington Library's Rare Book Collection. These reproductions include not only the text of the books, but also all of Caldecott's original pen and ink, and colored illustrations. Also included in this text is a brief overview of Randolph Caldecott's life and career, which also includes the American Library Association's establishment of The Caldecott Medal in 1937.

This outstanding collection of Caldecott Picture Books will delight readers of all ages. The stories are humorous, creative, and fun to read. Best of all, the pictures can provide hours of entertainment in their own right, both as an accompaniment to the stories and as a stimulus for helping children develop their own stories. While these stories are written for children, this book is also an invaluable resource for art historians and students of children's literature.

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