Stephen Michael King
Australian author and illustrator Stephen Michael King has created a number of award-winning picture books for the younger set, among them Millie, Jack, and the Dancing Cat, Emily Loves to Bounce, Where Does Thursday Go?, and The Pocket Dogs. A Publishers Weekly reviewer stated that Milli, Jack, and the Dancing Cat "is likely to delight readers" with its story of a "small gaggle of eccentric characters" who unleash their creativity in a variety of ways. Linda Ludke, writing in School Library Journal, dubbed the book a "charming story that celebrates imagination and individuality," while Booklist reviewer Gillian Engberg had praise for King's "exhuberant illustrations" using "scribbly ink lines and bright watercolor washes."
Another of King's children's stories, Emily Loves to Bounce, utilizes a rhyming text to tell the story of a playful little girl named Emily. "Through the rhyming text and King's vibrant ink and watercolour illustration, the reader feels Emily's energy and enthusiasm," commented Kathryn McNaughton in a review for Resource Links. A Publishers Weekly critic wrote that although the "narrowly focused picture book might not stand up to repeated readings, most children will enjoy a glimpse into Emily's colorful, imaginative, and very active world," and warned: "don't be surprised if your listeners begin bounding right along." Another whimsical work, The Pocket Dogs, finds mini-canines Biff and Buff tucked inside the pockets of their owner whenever he goes for a walk. When one pocket comes unraveled Bifff is deposited on the floor of the local grocery store, and a search for his unaware owner ensues. Noting that the book will "strike a chord with young readers" who count losing sight of parents among their biggest fears, Booklist contributor Carolyn Phelan wrote that The Pocket Dogs is "well-conceived and told with rhythm and humor."
Biographical and Critical Sources
Booklist, June 1, 1999, Hazel Rochman, review of Henry and Amy (Right-Way-Round and Upside Down), p. 1842; February 1, 2001, Carolyn Phelan, review of The Pocket Dogs, p. 1051; March 1, 2002, Carolyn Phelan, review of Where Does Thursday Go?, p. 1139; March 1, 2004, Gillian Engberg, review of Milli, Jack, and the Dancing Cat, p. 1196.
Kirkus Reviews, January 15, 2003, review of Emily Loves to Bounce, p. 143; March 1, 2004, review of Milli, Jack, and the Dancing Cat, p. 224.
Publishers Weekly, May 27, 1996, review of A Special Kind of Love, p. 77; April 19, 1999, review of Henry and Amy, p. 71; April 2, 2001, review of The Pocket Dogs, p. 63; December 9, 2002, review of Emily Loves to Bounce, p. 82; May 10, 2004, review of Milli, Jack, and the Dancing Cat, p. 58.
Resource Links, June, 2003, Kathryn McNaughton, review of Emily Loves to Bounce, p. 5.
School Library Journal, June, 2001, Lisa Gangemi Krapp, review of The Pocket Dogs, p. 132; April, 2002, Kathleen Kelly MacMillan, review of Where Does Thursday Go?, p. 100; March, 2003, Lisa Dennis, review of Emily Loves to Bounce, p. 196; April, 2004, Linda Ludke, review of Milli, Jack, and the Dancing Cat, p. 116.
Scholastic Australia Web site, http://www.scholastic.com/au/ (February 16, 2005), "Stephen Michael King."*
Brief BiographiesBiographies: Dan Jacobson Biography - Dan Jacobson comments: to Barbara Knutson (1959–2005) Biography - PersonalStephen Michael King Biography - Awards, Honors, Sidelights - Personal, Addresses, Career, Writings, Adaptations