Review Blog

Sep 17 2015

Piranhas don't eat bananas by Aaron Blabey

cover image

Scholastic, 2015. ISBN 9781743625781
(Age: 4+) Highly recommended. Humour, Piranha, Food, Fruit and vegetables, Diet. Beginning with a grisly list of what piranhas are, where they live and what they eat, Blabey's tongue in cheek attitude to this fish begins, making readers laugh from the first endpaper to the last. Blabey's list of edible delicacies begins with animals, particularly those found in the South American jungles, but quickly descends into all the animals kids know and love, bunny rabbits, puppies and kittens before listing, I suspect, a few people that Blabey could do without, including naughty children, astronauts, professional tennis players and belly dancers.
With the tone set on fantastic fun, the rhyming couplets detail Brian's attempt to get his peers to eat some fruit and vegetables. Readers will love predicting the rhyme of every line and learning to say the lines out loud. Little by little the child in the water is revealed, adding to the fun as the readers predict what part of him the fish may chose to nibble on, but when Brian suggests 'juicy plums' then the readers will love yelling out the word that rhymes, and then want to start over again. The last endpaper gives information about bananas, showing why piranhas simply do not eat them, but leading the way for the group to discuss what they eat, and for a parent or teacher to look at fruit and vegetables in a different way.
Blabey's illustrations are just wonderful: the cheeky looks on Brian's peers, the predominance of razor sharp teeth, the Carmen Miranda fruit, all add to the fun of the reading for one and all.
Fran Knight

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