Children’s book review: Imaginary Fred

Children's book review: Imaginary FredImaginary Fred by Eoin Colfer & Oliver Jeffers
Published by: HarperCollins
Format: Hardback
Source: Bought, Buy on Waterstones, Book Depository
Goodreads rating: 3.89

Synopsis: Did you know that sometimes, with a little electricity, or luck, or even magic, an imaginary friend might appear when you need one? An imaginary friend like Fred. Fred floated like a feather in the wind until Sam, a lonely little boy, wished for him and, together, they found a friendship like no other.

Childrens books are not championed enough and I think this is extremely dangerous, how can someone come to reading as a young person or adult if they were never encouraged to read outside of school? This topic is another blog post in itself… but for now, let’s move on.

This book is beautiful story about imaginary friendship and the real kind of friendship too. It’s funny and minimalist. I love the way the dialogue and illustrations work with each other – I love the style of Oliver Jeffers’s illustrations, they are so simple, detailed and poignant. The illustrations are in black and white and only Fred is in colour, he is blue. His colour and fading I think, is a beautiful metaphor for how much belief and imagination children put into creating an imaginary friend. Fred’s friend Sam believes in him and this is why he is allowed to exist and bring so much joy to Sam.  When Sam finds another human friend Fred isn’t it too upset because he isn’t alone anymore either.

The fading of Fred is also important, to know that friends fade in and out of our lives, as we grow up and sometimes they don’t grow up with us and that is okay because we will find other friends.

I loved reading this book with my niece, who for the most part was captured by Fred’s appearance on the page!

Have you read Imaginary Fred yet? Do you think children’s books get enough attention in the media?

  • What a lovely book this is! I am becoming more aware of kid’s books because I have two new nephews and I’m always thinking of what sort of things they’ll eventually read — and I like that this teaches that friends do come and go and that’s not a bad thing.