Justine Flynn (text), J Yi (illus), Miss Mae’s Saturday. Random House Australia, 28 March 2016. 32pp., $16.99 (pbk), ISBN 9780857988584
Mae loves it when her grandmother comes to visit as they always do exciting things together like visiting the zoo or having a picnic in the park. What can they do when it is raining outside, though? That’s where the enchantment of a large, empty cardboard box comes in. Such a box can be turned into anything you want it to be – a car, a plane – even a rocket ship. Using the box, Mae and her grandmother travel to Africa where they see lions, to Korea in the cherry blossom season where women are preparing for a tea ceremony and finally to the moon. This is a simple but charming story which valorises the power of imagination.
The illustrations are sometimes a little cartoon-like and sometimes simply reflect the written text rather than adding another level. Nonetheless, they celebrate the loving relationship between Mae and her grandmother, the importance of inter-generational interaction and the fact that grandmothers can have as much fun as their grandchildren.
Reviewed by Margot Hillel