This book isn't ready to be read - as the title makes clear. Which of course means any small child will be desperate for you to open it and start reading.... and you'll both be delighted.
Inside we find the King who's calling his story writer who has written a story but the pages have gone astray, and so together they set off to track them down.
The whole book is bursting at the seams with theatrical energy and verve. The illustrations are vibrant and dynamic, cleverly mixing great characters into buoyant pictures that maintain an appropriate "work-in-progress" feel.
The words are a fun and interesting mix of story-line, conversation between the King and the storyteller, inserts from the occasional amusing cameo character, and sentences aimed directly at the reader. One of these is a bold double page where, with a darkening of colour and a change in the feel of the story, the angry King is tells the reader to go away in no uncertain terms. Then, once the lost pages are found and reassembled, the story needs one more thing, and again there's a striking double-page change of colour and pace as a sprightly pea joins the character cast.... But is there now room to tell the old tale of The Princess and the Pea in the last two pages? Yes, just, and Wow! Fantastic through and through.
on 21 September 2009
How many of you can resist a book that tells you "Don't read me"? And then in the first few pages tells you to Go away! A book whose whole story is that there is no story.....
My daughter and I (she's 6, I'm not) sat in the library today giggling as I read it out loud and by the third page I had additional audience, also giggling.
A must for any child's bookshelf.
on 16 September 2014
My kids (3 and 7) adore this book, they know it word for word and like to act out the different parts. The idea of the story characters stepping outside of the narrative really gives their brains something to think about. Looks like it isn't in print any more, I have no idea why, it's a classic!
on 9 April 2011
This book is lovely. I first heard of it when I was reading a textbook about sharing books with children to develop their literacy.
The illustrations are the strength of this book. There is some lovely humour and lots to inspire the understanding of the sequence of stories as well as character and setting.
It would serve well as a topic opener or sum-up tool for a theme of traditional tales. However in itself it is a delightful read and highly recommended.
I'm not a fan of multiple fonts in a book (Charlie & Lola etc) however in this book it is purposeful to show the voice of the king, the writer, the wolf etc.
A lovely read to an individual or a class!!
on 25 July 2011
This is a fantastic book and a joy to read for any child.
Even if you're feeling a little tired or lacking motivation to `perform' when reading your child's bedtime story, the carefully planned story (or lack of!) does all the work for you.
Each time I'm reading the stories, I secretly hope my 4 year old daughter chooses this one.
Great fun to read to a younger child, and I'm sure very funny as a read for older children, who will appreciate the humour, and the many references to other stories.