The Stamp Collector

by Jennifer Lanthier
Illustrator Francois Thisdale

Fitzhenry & Whiteside | September 24, 2012 | Hardcover

The Stamp Collector is rated 5 out of 5 by 1.
On the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) Honour List 2014

2013 Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award Honor Book

2013 Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Illustrator's Award nominee

Forest of Reading's Golden Oak 2014 winner

2014 Silver Birch Express Award nominee

OLA 2012 Best Bet - Picture Books category

A city boy finds a stamp that unlocks his imagination; a country boy is captivated by stories. When they grow up, the two boys take different paths—one becomes a prison guard, the other works in a factory—but their early childhood passions remain. When the country boy's stories of hope land him in prison, the letters and stamps sent to him from faraway places intrigue the prison guard and a unique friendship begins.

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 32 pages, 10.25 × 9.25 × 0.35 in

Published: September 24, 2012

Publisher: Fitzhenry & Whiteside

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 1554552184

ISBN - 13: 9781554552184

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Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from "Thoughtful, Lyrical,...Poignant" Review by Michael Sims - reprinted from BookPage.com Stamps carry a message of hope Part of the fun of reading is being surprised, whether by an author you thought you knew or a story whose next step you thought you could predict. I was surprised in both ways when I read The Stamp Collector. Before I ran across this inspired picture book, I had read Jennifer Lanthier’s stylish and action-packed series of young adult mystery novels starring an intrepid 12-year-old named Hazel Frump, which began with The Mystery of the Martello Tower. Except for also being very well written, Lanthier’s new book could not be more different from its predecessors. “This is the story of not long ago,” Lanthier begins, “and not far away. It is the story of a boy who loves stamps and a boy who loves words.” François Thisdale’s delicately colorful paintings match the fable-like simplicity of Lanthier’s prose. If you know a child who wants to write or paint or otherwise find expression in the arts, this book might be just the inspirational nudge you’re looking for. It is very much a story about yearning to communicate. The Stamp Collector is a thoughtful, lyrical tale about how imagination and empathy take hold in different ways in the mind of a city boy and a country boy—and speak across all barriers. The book’s resonant central image is a stamp on a letter that the poor boy finds on the street. “In his dreams, the stamp is a kite,” writes Lanthier, “a paper jewel from the crown of a wise old king.” The city boy becomes a prison guard. The country boy becomes a writer whose too-realistic stories draw the ire of the country’s repressive political regime. “Words are dangerous,” snarl the officers who arrest the writer in the night. The two boys, now men, meet across the bars of the prison doors. But they are not allowed to speak. Then the writer begins to receive letters in response to his book, which is banned in his own country—letters from all over the world, adorned with exotic stamps. The guard can’t pass the letters to the writer, but finally he begins to read them himself. And slowly he begins to pass the stamps to the writer as coded messages of hope. For this new direction in her writing career, Lanthier was inspired by the story of Chinese writers Nurmuhemmet Yasin and Jiang Weiping, during her work with the international organization PEN (Poets, Editors, Novelists). In many hands this tale would have become a screed about repression or free speech. By concentrating on the basic human need to communicate, and by expressing much of her story through the poignant symbolism of the stamps, Lanthier avoids sermonizing. Together she and Thisdale turn The Stamp Collector into a poignant fable.
Date published: 2012-11-02

– More About This Product –

The Stamp Collector

The Stamp Collector

by Jennifer Lanthier
Illustrator Francois Thisdale

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 32 pages, 10.25 × 9.25 × 0.35 in

Published: September 24, 2012

Publisher: Fitzhenry & Whiteside

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 1554552184

ISBN - 13: 9781554552184

From the Publisher

On the International Board on Books for Young People (IBBY) Honour List 2014

2013 Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award Honor Book

2013 Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Illustrator's Award nominee

Forest of Reading's Golden Oak 2014 winner

2014 Silver Birch Express Award nominee

OLA 2012 Best Bet - Picture Books category

A city boy finds a stamp that unlocks his imagination; a country boy is captivated by stories. When they grow up, the two boys take different paths—one becomes a prison guard, the other works in a factory—but their early childhood passions remain. When the country boy's stories of hope land him in prison, the letters and stamps sent to him from faraway places intrigue the prison guard and a unique friendship begins.

About the Author

Jennifer Lanthier is a former wire service and newspaper reporter, speechwriter, magazine freelancer, and editor. She has interviewed actors, politicians, directors, musicians, scientists, athletes and CEOs and shared their stories with readers around the world. Jennifer is the author of the acclaimed Hazel Frump series adventure novels for children: The Mystery of the Martello Tower and The Legend of the Lost Jewels. She lives in Toronto with her family and enjoys basketball, taekwondo, and running, but regrets the fact that she cannot read music, play an instrument, or whistle.
The Stamp Collector is Jennifer's first picture book.
Francois Thisdale is an award-winning illustrator. His style combines traditional drawing and painting with digital images. He is the illustrator of Nini and Bird Child.