Total Pageviews

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Cave Baby, written by Julia Donaldson and illustrated by Emily Gravett. Macmillan, H B Fenn. 2010. $19.99 ages 3 and up

"No more spots and squiggles!
No more stars and stripes!
Cave Dad wags his finger.
"If you don't take care,
A mammoth's going to throw you
to the big brown bear!""

And now we know how those cave paintings appeared on the walls in Lascaux! Cave Baby's Mom did them. Well, maybe not. But we can suspend reality for a short time while sharing this lively new book by two of my favorite artists. Julia Donaldson gave me one of the best all-time read aloud books for my kindergarten classes...The Gruffalo. I have read it for more than ten years now, and I never tire of it. And Emily Gravett? Well, if you aren't watching her work, you need to get out there and get started. She is simply too talented for words.

Cave Baby's Mom likes to paint and his Dad likes to be brave (especially when dealing with a visiting and unwelcome mouse). Cave Baby is bored...until he finds a paint pot and brush. We all know what young children can do when the opportunity presents itself. Mom and Dad are not impressed and offer a warning that he takes to heart.

When the dreaded hairy mammoth arrives in the middle of the night, Cave Baby has a right to be concerned.  Off they go into the moonlit night, encountering an abundance of fearsome creatures as they stroll. Can you see the bear?  A lively game for observant little ones that keeps them carefully considering the adventurous double-page spreads.

When they finally arrive at the mammoth's home, we realize the impetus for the abduction:

" A five-legged tiger!
A long curly hare!
Horns on a hyena!
A beard on a bear!
A moustache on a mammoth!
This is lots of fun!"

Wow! This is Emily Gravett's first time collaboration. She has always illustrated only her own stories. It is a match made in picture book heaven. Don't miss it!

No comments:

Post a Comment