Mike Wilks Mike Wilks founded his own very successful graphic design company, TWD in 1970, and in 1975 started a second career as an illustrator and writer. He is inspired by Bosch, Brueghel, Escher and Dadd. He has had eight books of illustration work published, two of which were bestsellers, including The Ultimate Alphabet, which was in the Sunday Times bestseller chart for 57 weeks, sold 750,000 copies worldwide and was WHSmith's 'most shop-lifted title'. The BBC made an award-winning documentary about his work in the early 90s and there have been four one-man exhibitions of his work. As well as being bought by collectors across Europe and the US (Sir Tim Rice is among his many fans), his work has been acquired by the V & A in London and by the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Mike lives in London.
Wilks (The Ultimate Alphabet) launches a trilogy with this adventure set in a world where imagination has power and art is literally alive. Melkin (Mel) Womper, a talented young artist, is given the chance of a lifetime when he's selected to study under the famous painter, Ambrosius Blenk. This puts him at odds with the sinister Adolfus Spute, who represents the Fifth Mystery, one of five organizations with a stranglehold on everything that involves the five senses (the Fifth Mystery controls color). It also brings him the enmity of Blenk's lazy, drunken head apprentice, Groot. Together, these enemies make life difficult for Mel and his new friends, Ludo and Wren. Soon after Mel discovers the secret of passing through certain paintings into the Mirrorscape, a surreal alternate world that exists within the paintings, Spute launches an all-out attack on Blenk. Devilish angels, walking houses, impossible contraptions and monsters galore collide in a no-holds-barred battle of the brushes. Wilks creates a chaotic, whimsical romp that will appeal to the mind's eye. Ages 12-up. (Oct.) Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.
Gr 5-8-The first in a planned trilogy, this well-written adventure will appeal to fantasy fans. The only child of a poor weaver, Mel Womper is a talented though untrained artist. When he is apprenticed to a master painter, he realizes that the imaginary creatures he has always loved to paint might actually exist. There is a way to step into a painting and travel through the Mirrorscape, a universe made up of various artworks joined together. In this amazing place, anything an artist imagines can come to life. As Mel soon discovers, Master Blenk's enemies are ruthless in their attempts to win control over the artist and gain access to the Mirrorscape. When Blenk disappears, it's up to Mel, with the help of his new friends, to use his innate sensitivity and creativity to fight the forces of evil. Though rich in detail, the narrative moves at a quick pace. The characters are interesting and well developed. Strange hybrid creatures, a talking house, and the textures of paint and canvas all blend together to create a fascinating world full of color and magic.-Melissa Moore, Union University Library, Jackson, TN Copyright 2009 Reed Business Information.