Review Blog

Mar 03 2010

I'm Taggarty Toad by Peter Pavey

cover image

Walker Books, 2010. ISBN 9781921529481.
Picture book, ages 3-6. One of my children's favourite stories, when first published in 1980, this one will be revisited with mirth and gusto by another generation of families and classes. The drawings have lost none of their freshness, the intricate cross hatching testament to the time it took Peter Pavey to do the illustrations, and probably why he didn't stay in that profession! The clever and bold Taggarty has an array of adventures, taking on fearful pirates, loathsome dragons and even the sun in his quest to show that he is braver than most. Children will delight in the intricate drawings, running their fingers over each page in search of the variety of animals and objects almost hidden from view. The last few pages invite the reader to add their own swashbuckling adventure, and come home at last with the little worse for wear toad. Themes of taking risks and being adventurous are at the base of this picture book and so could be used with some success with smaller children.
The last two pages of the book give an interesting essay from editor, Myra Lee, outlining the reason this book was chosen to republish and then an enlightening piece by Peter Pavey about writing and illustrating this book. Both add an extra layer to the reading and enjoyment of this book.
Fran Knight

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