I was lucky enough to be sent another two new titles from the lovely people over at Maverick to review and I am pleased to say they keep on delivering fantastic picture books for both book loving kids and their parents!
Bairn goes Bonkers About Beetroot!
Bonker’s About Beetroot is a madcap tale about a group of animals who attempt to save their own safari park from closure. With no visitors all day, Zebra comes up with the idea to grow a lot of beetroot because people love beetroot, don’t they? Penguin finds the whole idea ‘Bonkers’ and thinks the idea will fail as nobody will visit to see some beetroot.
The animals set about growing lots of the purple vegetable, when one particular beetroot grows bigger, bigger…and bigger! The huge beetroot threatens to take over the park so Zebra decides to eat it all until he eventually turns purple! People then come from all over and the park is saved!
“Hooray for Zebra!” cheered the animals. “He’s saved our home.” And penguin said…”Bonkers!”
This is a very original story full of funny scenes. The Bairn especially appreciated the big pile of poo scene, unsurprisingly! He also liked the main characters of the ambitious Zebra and grumpy Penguin. He loved when the Penguin repeats ‘Bonkers!’.
This is a great comedy tale of friends coming together to fight for what’s important to them. Cath Jones manages to provide a surprise on each page, which kept us hooked. Even as the parent reader, I really couldn’t predict what would happen next, so it didn’t fall into the usual trap of many other picture books.
Chris Jevons’s illustrations are well-rounded and expressive, in particular the grumpy penguin! We also loved picking out and naming all the other animals, as Jevons manages to squeeze in lots on each page. This adds depth to the story of their friendship as we see how much the park means to them all.
Overall, we really enjoyed this crazy tale and hope there is a sequel…. ‘Bonkers About Bananas’ perhaps?
Daddy and I for Mummy and Bairn
Our second review title is called Daddy and I by Lou Treleaven and Sophie Burrows. This is a definite change of pace from the hilarity of big beetroots, but as the parent I enjoyed this one (only slightly!) more.
It evoked the same feelings for us as We’re going on a bear hunt and had a similar whimsical style of illustration to that and Rebecca Cobb’s The Paper Dolls.
A girl and her Daddy go out on Saturday for a day full of adventure. The pair use their imagination around every corner pretending to explore jungles, climb mountains or be secret spies.
Each double page brings a new adventure and the author Lou Treleaven has done a wonderful job of rhyming every adventure for this nostalgic tale of a father and daughter. A particular highlight for me is when they get home from their day out, soaking wet and the little girl still imagines a whale outside the window to wave at! I like how this story encourages us to use our own imagination and pretend. It really shows how easy it is to discover the wonder both outside and inside without the use of any toys or games. I think it succeeds in encouraging active play between parents and children, without being preachy as some other books can be.
We loved the soft style of Burrows’ illustrations too, as it really works well in giving a lovely view of nature around us. I think she has really added to the fun of the story with her cute representations of the main two characters. I think the double page spread of them making shapes from the clouds is especially beautiful and sums up the tone of the book as a whole.
We were pleasantly surprised by this book! I thought with it being particularly about a father and daughter, it wouldn’t really suit us, as a mummy and son. However, I was delighted to be proven wrong!
Thank you, Maverick, for another two regular reads to our ever expanding library!