Review Blog

Aug 15 2016

I spy Dad! by Janeen Brian

cover image

Ill. by Chantal Stewart. New Frontier Publishing, 2016. ISBN 9781925059649
(Age: 4+) Highly recommended. Fathers, Father's Day. First published in 2010, this book along with I spy Mum! is a wonderful story to read anytime, but has more resonance around those days remembering fathers and mothers.
A young girl plays a game of I Spy, looking at the variety of fathers that are about the place, but wondering what hers will be. In rhyming lines, Janeen Brian outlines the variety of fathers and their interaction with their offspring and this delightful tale is beautifully complemented with the soft water colour drawings, evoking movement, colour and laughter. Children will love looking at the variety of fathers and the things they do with their children, reminding them of what they do with their dads. Love oozes from each page both with the words and illustrations.
The child see a splashing dad, a crashing dad, a dashing dad, dads of all ages, sizes and backgrounds, doing all kinds of things that a dad might do. Where will hers be? A diverse range of fathers is shown, including some from different ethnic groups but all showing the joy that comes from doing things with their children.
The rhyme and rhythm in the text are perfect for reading aloud, and the positioning of the lines on a white background enhances its ability to be read by beginning readers, while the rhyming lines encourage the reader to predict the next word.
For classes it makes a wonderful introduction to talking about fathers and families, and how each family is different but the same.
Fran Knight

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