Saturday, 25 April 2015

Hippobottymus By Steve Smallman and Ada Grey

A mouse sat down by a bubbling creek –
The creek went bubble and the mouse went squeak!
Squeak, squeak, bubble, bubble, squeak, squeak, squeak.
Squeak, squeak, bubble, bubble, squeak, squeak, squeak!
Summary From Little Tiger Press
Plinkety-plonk! Tweetily-tweet! The jungle animals are making music to the sound of the bubbling creek! But – goodness me! – what is that naughty hippo up to? A bonkers, musical rhyming story with a laugh-out-loud, farting surprise! 
Dance and sing along to the musical noises – and bottoms - of the animals in this funny book by the award-winning author, Steve Smallman (Big Bear’s Bottom, Dragon Stew). Kids will love the bright and lively illustrations from Ada Grey (Shhh! Don’t Wake the Royal Baby). Packed with laughs and rhymes, Hippobottymus is the perfect picture book for parents and children to read aloud. 
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I was pretty sure I wouldn't like Hippobottymus because breaking wind seems to have become a bit of an overworked subject in children's books. I needn't have worried though because the story made me laugh out loud. I was expecting it to be rude and very silly. It's silly all right, but in such a delightfully rhythmic way that I found my foot tapping as I read. And the farting I wasn't looking forward to turns out to be a clever twist right at the end. 

The illustrations are bright, colourful and lots of fun, but it's the words – brilliantly rhyming and rhythmic – that made this book for me. Read it out loud. Let your children join in with drums, rattles, spoons, anything that makes a good rackety din. It's far too upbeat for bedtime if you like your little ones to go calmly and quietly to bed, but for finger-clicking, toe-tapping, jiggly-giggly enjoyment you just have to share this book with them at some time. Don't miss it! 

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