Colin Thompson, The Corner of My Eye, Walker Books Australia, October 2019, 32 pp., RRP $26.99 (hbk) ISBN 9781925381931
The Corner of My Eye by Colin Thompson tells the story of Sally and her Grandad. Sally’s Grandad has lost something important. His family believe he has ‘lost his marbles’, though Grandad can tell you that his marbles are in a blue biscuit tin from the coronation of George the Sixth.
Sally searches Grandad’s house, finding and showing him items in the hope that he will remember what he has lost. Throughout the book the seasons unfold in the dizzying illustrations Thompson is famous for. When the reader reaches Christmas, we discover that Grandad’s life has lost its colour. As winter gives way to spring, Sally makes a childish attempt to ensure that there is always colour in Grandad’s life.
The narrative leaves the reader feeling a little off-kilter, reminiscent perhaps of the experience of early onset dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. While younger children may miss the themes and import of this book. it is a visual feast that leaves a lasting impression.
Reviewed by Anne Varnes