Oliver & Jumpy

Werner Stejskal


These little bedtime stories with their lovely illustrations are great for small kids. A parent can read the text and tell the child in his own words. These animal stories have sufficient text to keep early readers happy and provide some educational value.

*****

51jsjmszgylCover

While the artwork throughout this series is quite lovely, the cover could use a professional designer’s touch. Contrary to popular assumption, an illustrator and a designer are not always one and the same. These are two distinct skill sets, and your cover suffers if you don’t have it designed properly.

My main complaint here is that the cover is just boring. It’s reproduced artwork from inside the book, and the text treatment is unexciting. The recycled artwork could have actually worked fine, but the text needs a facelift.

Illustrations

Really nice work. There’s a whole lot of fun detail in each spread. The color work is vibrant and lovely, and all of the characters are full of expression.

The page layout, once again, leaves something to be desired. Multiple fonts are used on title pages, and they clash quite dramatically. Some pages contain huge blocks of text with no artwork at all (though, to be fair, this is rare).

Story

These are very short little stories, designed to teach a lesson. The lessons are a bit on-the-nose (i.e. a lazy character named “Lazy”), though perhaps that’s ok. The text overall could use an editor’s touch for smoother reading–there were several spelling/grammatical discrepancies throughout.

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About the Author

Born in Vienna, Austria, Werner is now living in Perth, Australia with his wife, two married children, and three grandchildren. He worked many years in the printing industry and later for the United Nations in Vienna. After an eventful life, now retired, he began to write children’s stories, had them illustrated through Upwork, narrated them himself for YouTube and finally published the ebooks on most platforms. Werner’s dream is to see “Oliver and Jumpy” animated as a TV series.

There are lots of fairy tales and bedtime stories around and many of them quite violent. This made Werner decide to write something different. On a flight from Europe to Australia, he watched the movie Magic on Belle Island with Morgan Freeman, where Freeman teaches a little girl to have imagination and write her first story. This inspired Werner as well and the first stories with his two characters Oliver, the elegant tomcat, and Jumpy, his kangaroo lady friend, made their appearance. Some very capable illustrators have helped to create this picture book series.

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