9.17.2012

The Baby That Roared by Simon Puttock, illustrated by Nadia Shireen

The Baby that Roared by Simon Puttock and illustrated by Nadia Shireen has a definite fairy-tale feel to it. The Baby that Roared also has the repetition and sneaky off-the-page action that kids love. And it has a gross bit, which kids love also. Shireen's crisply colored, collage like illustrations bring Puttock's kooky story to life and even make the little monster, er, I mean, baby, almost adorable. And, as with all great picture books, Puttock throws in a twist at the end.


Mr and Mrs Deer had no baby of their own, "but, oh! - how they wish they did!" Imagine their joy when, one day, a bundle with a note appears on their doorstep? Mrs Deer pops the baby into a laundry basket, which is just the right size for a bed, and the baby lets out a great, big ROAR! 

Unsure of what do to with this roaring baby, the Deers call Uncle Duncan, a purple owl, for help and he tells them to "warm up some milk immediately." When they return to the room with a nice bottle, Uncle Duncan is nowhere to be found, although some stray purple feathers are floating around the baby. And now the baby smells awful! This pattern repeats itself as Auntie Agnes, a blue rabbit, tells the Deers to get some diapers then disappears. Dr Fox insists on peace and quite and asks them to leave the room as he examines the roaring baby, then disappears. 


















Finally, Granny Bear is called upon to help the roaring baby. Granny Bear clearly knows what babies need, and she is BIGGER than the roaring baby. She hoists that baby over her shoulder and pats and pats until... One spectacular two-page spread that shows the baby letting out an enormous burp. The next page shows Uncle Duncan, Auntie Agnes and Dr Fox bursting forth amidst a splattering of what can only be spit-up... 

The gig is up. The baby's deer-mask has popped off and Granny Bear is hip to what's happening. "'That's not a little baby!' cried Granny Bear. 'That is a LITTLE MONSTER!'" The monster runs off and, while Mr and Mrs Deer are heartbroken, they "found themselves a sweet little kitten to love." But, you'll just have to read the book to find out what's up with the kitty...

Source: Review Copy

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