Thursday, 29 May 2014

Cinderella's Bum by Nicholas Allan

Cinderella's Bum is a bit of a misleading title since it's really not about her bottom at all! But it is about bottoms and it makes my four (nearly five - eek!) year old laugh a lot. It's classic Nicholas Allan and lots of fun to read and talk about.
Narrated by an adorable younger sister, it tells the story of her older sister not wanting to go swimming because she feels her bottom is too big. Her younger sister talks her through various characters from history and fiction that have had big and different shaped bottoms. We particularly like the page where it says 'Some bottoms have trumpets in them' (cue us trumpeting loudly!)  and then 'Posh ones have clarinets' (cue us peeping!). Rosie loves the page where the wicked queen from Snow White is talking to the mirror with her bottom 'Mirror, mirror, don't be rotten. Say I have the nicest bottom!'

All in all it's funny, good to share and generates lots of laughter - you can't get better than that!

Thursday, 22 May 2014

How to Hide a Lion by Helen Stephens

How to Hide a Lion is a lovely picture book which has an instant classic look about it. We've been really enjoying this one as a family, my 20 month old particularly likes roaring at the moment so it works well for her!

The story is very sweet, all about a lion who is running away from people who are scared of him. It's the classic tale of a small child, Iris, who is wiser than all the grown-ups and of course children love to hear this! It reminds me a little bit of 'Rhino's don't eat pancakes', it has the same sense of people not seeing what's right under their noses (in both cases a rather large animal!). I really like the ending and think it's very satisfying. I also like the references to Judith Kerr, Iris reads to the lion 'The Tiger Who Came to Tea' and the lion stops the burglars at the end in a way that is reminiscent of Mog. Maybe I'm reading too much into it but I thought it was nice!

I've always been a big fan of Helen Stephens illustration style and I think her work is perfect here. She has a rather lovely website which you can find here. How to Hide a Lion has been nominated, shortlisted and won many awards, all of which Helen mentions on her website.