MOUNT Eliza illustrator Karen Erasmus’s new children’s picture book brings to life the heart-warming and true story of runaway greyhound, Albert.
In her second illustration project with Gippsland author Kylie Miller, Erasmus has created colourful and engaging images of Albert’s chaotic adventures as the anxious, adopted greyhound overcomes his fear of cats to find a safe home, a warm bed, and a family of his own.
The book, Albert, The Greyhound Who Loves to Run is about a two-year-old greyhound who jumped the fence at his Gippsland lakes home after being spooked by the family cat a day after his adoption.
The story of his escape and nine weeks on the run featured in the national media in 2018 and captured the interest of animal lovers around the world as the author and her family worked to bring him home.
Miller says the account is fictionalised but includes real-life characters, including greyhound Teddy, Cleo the cat, and Albert’s great love and saviour, Rhonda. It includes themes of love, family, patience, persistence, friendship, and belonging.
She says as well as giving children an entertaining and educational picture book, she hopes the book encourages people to consider the value of adopting greyhounds, and pets more broadly.
Miller and her husband have since adopted two more greyhounds, as have about 3000 other Victorians in the past year.
Erasmus has been illustrating professionally since 2012, creating around 20 children’s picture books and material for the education sector, and designing patterns for products.
The illustrator says working and living on the Mornington Peninsula means she is never lost for inspiration.
Albert, The Greyhound Who Loved to Run is available at all good bookshops or online at major book retailers.