Review Blog

Sep 20 2015

Herman's holiday by Tom Percival

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Bloomsbury, 2015. ISBN 9781408852088
(Ages: 4-8) In this follow-up to Herman's Letter, Herman the bear and his best friend Henry are off on a camping adventure. They would have liked to go somewhere fabulous, like a luxurious beach or Cake World, but they all cost much more money than Henry and Herman can afford. While Herman has a wonderful time camping, nothing seems to be going right for Henry - camping is just not his thing! Herman, not wanting to see his friend sad any longer, puts into action a plan that will turn the camping trip into Henry's dream holiday. The matte illustrations provide much of the humour and detail of the story, with funny signs, and pictures showing Henry's camping misfortunes (being attacked by fish, struggling to pitch his tent, the bridge collapsing under him). Creative touches like a black cloud raining on Henry when he is upset as well as varied structural elements (thought bubbles, multiple scenes on a page) all help to make this an aesthetically pleasing, and engaging book. The lift-the-flap postcards that Herman and Henry write provide another element of fun that children will enjoy for their sensory appeal as well as their humour. Tom Percival's wittiness here will appeal to children and adults alike, especially fans of his other Herman story.
Nicole Nelson

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