In the deep dark woods, a plucky little mouse takes a stroll, only to be ogled by every passing predator looking to make an easy meal of him. He foils them all by inventing an imaginary protector, the gruffalo. He’s big and hairy, with sharp teeth, a black tongue, and purple prickles, and he’ll be here soon for a lunch date. The mouse chuckles at the gullible would-be attackers as they hightail it out of there. Don’t they know there’s no such thing as a gruffalo? But when an actual gruffalo does emerge from the shadows of the deep dark woods, stomach growling for a tasty mouse sandwich, our friend has to think quickly to outwit this not-so-imaginary monster.
So, we are coming up on a new year, and the new year is a time for keeping resolutions. When I started this blog, I promised a good friend that I would review this books, and I am so glad I did, because it is a keeper. The whole thing is done in adorable rhymes with catchy refrains that let the kids really interact with the story. And the story of a tiny but courageous main character outsmarting the big bad bullies just never gets old for me, or for little people. It resonates with kids because they feel so much like that little mouse, small and powerless, with grown ups everywhere trying to push them around. They love to root for the little guy who stands on his own two feet and emerges triumphant because it makes them feel empowered in their own lives. Super fun read, I might just buy it.
Find out if this book is at your local library at World Cat.
Read more about Julia Donaldson on her website.
Illustrator Axel Scheffler also has a great website.