Review Blog

Jan 20 2011

The perfect present by Sally Rippin

cover image

Egmont, 2010. ISBN 978 1921859277.
Series: Billie B Brown
(Ages: Junior primary) Recommended. A seemingly simple tale, charmingly told, puts this series in the forefront of the groups of books being offered for newly confident readers. Exuberant Billie (the B stands for Bursting) is making gingerbread biscuits for Christmas. She and her friend from next door, Jack, have a problem leaving some on the plate for others to eat. Billie and Jack talk about presents and Billie shows Jack what she thinks is her Christmas present - a bicycle hidden in the shed. Jack is saddened because that is what he has asked for and the pair quarrels, which Billie later regrets. Her bubble is burst when her parents tell her to leave the shed door closed because that is where the people next door have hidden Jack's present. So the stage is set for a surprising Christmas Day.
Full of the warmth of family and friends around Christmas time, the story is delightful in resolving the quarrel between the two children. And the bubbly Billie B is a lovely character for children to read about. They will have fun answering the questions that Sally Rippin poses through the text, flagging what may be about to happen and asking children to make predictions. All wrapped up in a neat easy to hold, stiff covered book the illustrations by Aki Fukuoka add to the humour of the text.
Fran Knight

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