Kids’ books: Noisy Neighbours (Ruth Green)

Noisy Neighbours (Ruth Green)
Noisy Neighbours (Ruth Green)

One of the best things about immersing myself in the kids’ books is the opportunity to appreciate the illustrations and formats.

Many times, I’ll be reading to one or other of the kids and the first thing I’ll say on opening the covers is: “I love the way this book is drawn.”

I must say it a lot because E. has commented once that I “always say that”. I didn’t think I always said it, but I know I often say it.

Before I even thought of having kids, I was collecting kids’ books where I fell in love with the illustrations and images. One of the first I bought was Charles Fuge’s Bush Vark’s First Day Out. Another was The Gnole (by Alan ‘Butterfly Ball’ Aldridge, Steven Boyett, and Maxine Miller.

There’s such a mix of media and range of styles in children’s books, and I must admit to being attracted to the illustrations that have a studied simplicity about them.

When I pulled Ruth Green’s Noisy Neighbours from the library bag (the kids choose their own books most of the time), I was immediately enamoured of the bold, block-printy aesthetic.

Other bloggers offered more insight into the publication:

Ruth Green is a talented artist who was commissioned by Tate to illustrate and write “Noisy Neighbours” for their children’s picture book collection. I am enchanted by the colorful illustrations of owls, birds, snails, squirrels, bees, ducks and badgers. Ruth’s work shows influences of retro patterns, 1970s wallpaper, and 60s and 70s Scandinavian ceramics.

(quoted from this post at; for more images from Noisy Neighbours, visit this post at print & pattern)

Page detail from Noisy Neighbours (Ruth Green)
Page detail from Noisy Neighbours (Ruth Green)

Our 3.5 year old son chose the book night after night. I think we ended up reading it to him almost every day we had the book out of the library. He couldn’t get enough of it and, by the end of the loan period, he had almost memorised the text.

He loved Sid the tired snail, and he especially enjoyed the foxes that made the hullabaloo (he would point to each fox and declare “Hullabaloo!”, then giggle helplessly).

Even though we were reading it every night, I never got tired of the images. I think I was guilty of saying “I love this book – it has such gorgeous pictures!” every time I opened the cover.

It’s a beautiful book that’s perfect for reading to toddlers and preschoolers (and for preppies/Grade 1 to read for themselves!).

To see her official website, which features more of her work and project news, visit Ruth Green Design.


4 thoughts on “Kids’ books: Noisy Neighbours (Ruth Green)

  1. Amélie 04/02/2013 / 9:49 am

    I love the way it’s drawn, too! I’ll try to find it at our library, thanks for the recommendation.

    • Tseen Khoo 04/02/2013 / 10:50 am

      Glad you enjoyed the post – thanks for dropping by! It’s a lovely little book, and one that I have remembered all this time.

  2. Ruth Green 07/02/2013 / 1:58 am

    Thankyou for the review of ‘Noisy Neighbours’. It has made my day to know that your little boy enjoyed it so much.

    • Tseen Khoo 07/02/2013 / 10:25 am

      Such a thrill to have you comment on this post. 🙂

      It was indeed a well-loved book, and writing the blogpost also gave me the opportunity to discover more of your work (a great bonus!).

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