Renee French as Rainy Dohaney: Tinka & My Best Sweet Potato

31. Tinka by Rainy Dohaney (Renee French)  (buy)

Rating: (3/5)

2003, Atheneum, 40 pgs

Ages: (3+)

"What's it like to be so small you can fit under a door? So small you can fly on the back of a bird? So small you can have an amazing adventure others can only dream about? Join Tinka -- a sheep the size of a cupcake -- and find out!"

Borrowed a copy from my local library.

Rainy Dohaney is an alias used by graphic artist Renee French to write two children's picture books in early 2000.  I was first introduced to French through her current children's graphic novel Barry's Best Buddy and thought I'd try her earlier children's work.  This is certainly a cute book; having all the essential cute bases covered.  It's sweet and if that's the type of picture book you are looking for this will please.  However, there wasn't much that interested me here.  Barry's BB is waaay better.  French dropped her unusual unsettling writing/drawing format and I didn't find what I like about her work present here.  She hasn't quite given up on worldview though as in the end Tinka does have a tiny sense of vindication when she can finally hold a little power of her own.  The illustration of Sooty the Crow was my favourite.


45. My Best Sweet Potato  by Rainy Dohaney (buy)

Rating: (5/5)

2006, Atheneum, 40 pgs

Ages: (3+)

"Woolyman is K's best friend, and Woolyman says K is his best . . .sweet potato. Woolyman used to say ordinary things when you pulled his string, but that was before he went through the washing machine. Now, life is never dull. One Tuesday they meet Mr. Tree and Mac, the weaverbird, and the adventure that follows is a story of friendship, sharing, and . . .sweet potato."

Borrowed a copy through Inter-Library Loan.

Much better than Tinka!  This is the type of illustration I expect and love from Renee French!  Absolutely adorable and just a little odd at the same time.  A lovely story for those who have a special place in their hearts for a beloved stuffed toy.  Woolyman could be seen as cute or just a tiddly bit creepy, depending on your point of view, however I found him so charming I want my own Woolyman.  What a shame this book is out of print.  Well worth finding a copy!


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