Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Children’s Book Review, I Just Ate My Friend

Reviewed by Susan Stephenson,

I Just Ate My Friend is a children’s picture book created by Heidi McKinnon and published by Allen and Unwin (2017.) $Au 24.99 HB

From the publisher:

This beautiful, innovative picture book from an enormously talented creator will make you laugh out loud. The search for a true friend is something everyone can relate to - from the very young to the very old.

I just ate my friend. He was a good friend. But now he is gone. Would you be my friend?

A hilarious story about the search for friendship and belonging... and maybe a little bit about the importance of impulse control... from an amazing new creator.

After many, many hours of reading to kids, you develop a strong sense of what is going to work as a read-aloud. This one will! Let’s start with the title - can’t you just imagine the Kinder-Year 2 set wanting to know more? Next comes the front cover: those BIG eyes, that “oops” expression. By now, they will be clamouring to have you read it. The great thing is, the invitation to play continues. Inside we see the same little guy from the cover that realised he had just eaten his friend, quite distressed that his friend is now gone.

And then we witness the search for a new friend, a search which doesn’t go well, and continues with the same very clever graphic illustration. The strong colours and large images contribute so much to making this a great picture book to share with kids. They will love looking at all the strange creatures, they will adore joining in with a ROAR, and finally, they will roll around laughing over the very clever twist at the end.

I award I Just Ate My Friend the coveted Book Chook Feather of Approval and highly recommend it for homes, public libraries and schools. I know for sure I’ll be keeping watch for McKinnon’s next books.

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