Review Blog

Mar 23 2016

This is a circle by Chrissie Krebs

cover image

Random House Australia, 2016. ISBN 9780857988058
(Ages: 2-5) Rhyme. The back cover says 'This is the cover that wraps around the book. Inside is funnier - just take a look'. That says it all really - it is unashamedly silly! Don't be fooled by the title, this is not a 'name the shape' book. It's a fun rhyme with a great flow, featuring 1990s cartoon-style illustrations with lots of block colours and crazy looking animals with big teeth and bulging eyeballs. The cat is a little reminiscent of Leigh Hobbs's Old Tom.
The story is about a wild-looking one-eyed bear, a tap-dancing goat, a song-singing cat and a pant-wearing fox and the fun they have with a ball, a box, a scarf, a hat, a car and a boat. For example, 'The goat climbs the box while wearing the hat, which frightens the fox and angers the cat.' Needless to say it all gets a bit crazy and the end of the book sees them& stuck on top of the box with no way to get down.
The main subject and object words of the book (bear, cat, goat, fox, ball, box, hat, scarf, car, boat) are repeated often and are in a larger text size which shows the reader where to add emphasis, inserts fun into the act of reading and makes for enjoyable listening. The textural front cover, with a circle cut out in the hardcover, will appeal to young children.
This is a rollicking, fun ride that children will want to hear repeatedly and will love to join in reading. It has the potential to encourage early literacy development because of the use of simple, phonetic words and to promote conceptual understanding of rhyme.
Nicole Nelson

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