The Lost Sock by Gillian Johnson

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The Lost Sock by Gillian Johnson

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Category: Graphic Novels
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Luke Marlowe
Reviewed by Luke Marlowe
Summary: Gillian Johnson tells a short, sweet tale about socks, loss, and longing. Essentially a children’s story book made for adults, it has some funny moments and beautiful illustrations.
Buy? Maybe Borrow? Yes
Pages: 64 Date: October 2014
Publisher: Constable
ISBN: 9781472112439

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A lost sock. We’ve all had them. In fact, I know people who only buy socks of one colour in order to always have matching socks. I, who prefer to buy brightly coloured socks (much like the man in this book), seem to spend my life with my feet constantly mismatched. It doesn’t bother me all that much, but it certainly affects the hero of this tale, who goes on an adventure in order to find the missing sock.

Gillian Johnson is known for her illustrations in ‘adult’ children’s books – We’re Going On A Bar Hunt and The Very Hungover Caterpillar. She has also written the Monster Hospital series of books for children. The Lost Sock is certainly a book for parents, but it could very easily be read to the children too.

A gentle tale about a man who buys a dashing pair of red socks, wears them in, then visits a laundry in order to clean them. A chance encounter with a young woman leads him to lose the sock, and so begins his journey for the lost sock. It’s all very sweet, and the illustrations lend it a genuine charm. Little moments, like the encounter with the Sockiatrist, made me smile, and the ending is very sweet indeed.

Part of the beauty of this book is that it could be, in fact, a very deep meditation, loss, and why we sometimes we try too hard to hold on to things we have lost. On the other hand, it could just be a picture book about a lost sock…

All in all, The Lost Sock is a well written and wonderfully illustrated book. I don’t feel it was particularly geared at me – these sorts of books never particularly appealed to me as a child, and I’m yet to have my own, so had no real familiarity with the book. I’m sure it’ll do well though – for parents who want a book of their own when reading to the children, and for those who loved these sorts of books as a child, this is really quiet lovely.

For books that appeal to both old and young alike, I’ll always recommend Shirley Hughes. Beautiful illustrations mix with wonderful, familiar stories – there’s a review here. And, if you’re looking for a picture book with a fun message, Elephantantrum! by Gillian Shields and Cally Johnson-Isaacs is well worth a read

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Buy The Lost Sock by Gillian Johnson at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Lost Sock by Gillian Johnson at Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
Buy The Lost Sock by Gillian Johnson at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Lost Sock by Gillian Johnson at


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