Review Blog

Sep 30 2010

Mr Badger and the missing ape by Leigh Hobbs

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Allen and Unwin, 2010. ISBN 9781742374185.
(Age 6-10) Highly recommended. Algernon the Ape has been standing in his glass cage in the lobby of the Boubles Grand Hotel for as long as anyone can remember. Children absolutely adore him and Sir Cecil Smothers-Carruthers, the owner of the hotel, refuses to have him removed when his wife want to renovate the hotel. But one day he disappears. Will Mr Badger be able to find him?
I enjoyed this story even more than the first in the series, Mr Badger and the big surprise. The idea of a large ape being the focal point of an exclusive hotel is a good starting point for a hilarious story featuring the capable Mr Badger. I loved exploring the hotel with Mr Badger as he searched for the Algernon and really enjoyed seeing all the little rooms with hotel crockery and furnishings and the gloomy tunnel. Once again the naughty Sylvia Smothers-Carruthers makes an appearance and children will delight in her tantrums. The language is very funny and reads aloud really well. I can imagine children clamouring to read it themselves after a librarian or parent reads it out loud.
This book will make an excellent addition to books for the newly emergent reader.
Pat Pledger

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