What's the best fun in the whole village? Riding the patchwork bike we made! A joyous picture book for children by award-winning author Maxine Beneba Clarke.
Winner of the Children's Book Council of Australia (CBCA) Crichton Award for Debut Illustrator 2017
Selected as a CBCA Honour Picture Book 2017
'Beautifully written and incredibly powerful.' Books + Publishing
When you live in a village at the edge of the No-Go Desert, you need to make your own fun. That's when you and your brothers get inventive and build a bike from scratch, using everyday items like an old milk pot (maybe mum is still using it, maybe not) and a used flour sack. You can even make a numberplate from bark, if you want. The end result is a spectacular bike, perfect for going bumpity-bump over sandhills, past your fed-up mum and right through your mud-for-walls home.
A delightful story from multi-award-winning author Maxine Beneba Clarke, beautifully illustrated by street artist Van T Rudd.
This deceptively simple story by author Maxine Beneba Clarke is beautifully written and incredibly powerful. It uses evocative language and onomatopoeia to flesh out a world so physically different from most Australian lives, but its universal appeal comes from anchoring the story to the experience of owning a bike. Written from the perspective of a child, we know little about her world other than she lives in a 'mud-for-walls' home in a village surrounded by 'no-go desert' and 'stretching-out sky'. The bike she shares with her cheeky brothers has been cobbled together from scavenged objects-handlebars from branches, a bell from mother's milk pot, and a flag made from a flour sack. The illustrations by artist Van T Rudd of paint on cardboard are stark and simple, often quite abstract, but they effectively flesh out this world. Like all the best writing, The Patchwork Bike asks more questions than it answers, making it a great conversation starter to learn more about other cultures, but it's also a delightful picture book for kids aged three and up that depicts the universal joy that riding a bike bestows. If it isn't shortlisted for a CBCA Award in the coming year, I will be very disappointed. - Books + Publishing
Maxine Beneba Clarke is a widely published Australian writer of Afro-Caribbean descent. Maxine's short fiction, non-fiction and poetry have been published in numerous publications including Overland, The Age, Meanjin, The Saturday Paper and The Big Issue. Her critically acclaimed short fiction collection Foreign Soil won the ABIA for Literary Fiction Book of the Year 2015 and the 2015 Indie Book Award for Debut Fiction, and was shortlisted for the Matt Richell Award for New Writing at the 2015 ABIAs and the 2015 Stella Prize. She was also named as one of the Sydney Morning Herald's Best Young Novelists for 2015. Maxine has published three poetry collections including Carrying the World, which won the Victorian Premier's Literary Award for Poetry 2017 and was shortlisted for the Colin Roderick Award. The Hate Race, a memoir about growing up black in Australia won the NSW Premier's Literary Award Multicultural NSW Award 2017 and was shortlisted for an ABIA, an Indie Award, the Victorian Premier's Literary Awards and Stella Prize. The Patchwork Bike, Maxine's first picture book with Van T. Rudd was a CBCA Honour Book for 2017.