Small in the City

A children’s picture book by Sydney Smith. On a snowy day in a big city, a child hops off a streetcar and walks through a busy city, between office buildings, through parks and down busy streets. Along the way, the child provides helpful tips about which alleys make good shortcuts, which trees to climb and where to find a friendly face, all the while searching for what is lost. Small in the City is the first book that award-winning illustrator Sydney Smith has both written and illustrated. The illustrations in this book are watercolour and alternate between full spreads and small panels.

Small in the City was a beautifully executed book. It appealed to younger readers while also having a mature element to the story. This piece captured the perspective of the main character very well, which made the story easy to follow and understand. The visuals in this book were beautiful and captivating. It also included a very moving and original concept that hadn’t been seen before.

From the 2022 Masterworks jury:

“Reading Sydney’s “Small in the City” to my 8 yr old son, even I felt myself feeling wisped away to experience the big city through the young one’s eye. It’s an impactful capturing of the protagonist’s journey’s.” 

Marilyn Smulders is the executive director of the Writers’ Federation of Nova Scotia, a job she has held since November 2017. Previous employment includes working as the Communications Director at NSCAD University (Nova Scotia College of Art and Design) and as a reporter and editor at the Halifax Daily News. She has a Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, and a Bachelor of Fine Art from NSCAD University. She is also a textile artist who works in the medium of quilt making.