Monkey On The Run

I must warn you before you start. This review is going to be gushing.

Leo Timmers has been producing picturebooks from Belgium for over nine years and I am ashamed to say this is the first I’ve read of his. But first to the story, which is all told wordlessly.

Monkey and his son are out in the motorbike and sidecar when they hit a traffic jam. So out jumps Monkey Junior to skip, jump and climb over all the vehicles ahead while his father tries to catch up. This is where the book reveals its wonders as each spread showcases the wackiest and most wonderful assortment of cars, trucks, tractors, sleds and crazy contraptions I couldn’t possible begin to name.

Timmers obviously loves illustrating vehicles. They are all wonderfully designed with slightly retro Americana stylings. The surface detail of each one is just beautiful with texture, weathering and paint, including the odd fingerprint which all adds to luscious illustrations you just want to touch. And each vehicle acts as a stage and set piece for a range of animals to tell their stories and substories that surprise and delight the longer you look at each one.

Detailed page spreads and illustrations that show stories within stories usually draw comparisons with Richard Scarry, but Leo Timmers manages to do all this without any words while also throwing in some nods to Hanna Barbara Wacky Races.

This is a really beautiful, clever and delightful picturebook, ideal for 5-7 year olds. 

Book Cover - Monkey on the Run
Publication Date
June 2019