Review Blog

Mar 31 2020

Jump! by Andrew Plant

cover image

Ford St Publishing, 2020. ISBN: 9781925804461.
(Age: 4+) Highly recommended. When little Quig is born into that great city with its overhanging cables and towers of steel, he watches as his siblings jump and dart, leaping off the towers, fanning out their wings to glide downwards, using their tails to hang from, steering with their powerful fins. But little Quig hides from the challenge: his tail is short and stumpy, his fins thinner than the others, and he is frightened by the towers. He climbs up ready to jump but being called Stumpy by the others does nothing to improve his confidence, so he climbs back down again. But one day spurred on by their derision, he takes the plunge and jumps from the highest beam of the Cloud Towers.
A wonderful story about achieving one's destiny, about overcoming obstacles, about proving the bullies wrong, Plant's tale will be a starting point for many discussions at school and at home about bullying and how it impedes the victim.
Plant has created a little animal that children will relate to: he is smaller than the others, less well developed, with fewer abilities. His little face peers out at the reader, his large eyes reflecting the fear he feels. Children will instantly recognise the emotions the little animal is feeling and sympathise with him, willing him to do well.
The wonderful illustrations remind readers of a dystopian world, a world of cables and steel towers, of overhanging beams and rivets, peopled by an array of animals that will cause children to laugh out loud and look more closely at the attributes of these creatures. I love the intricacy of the beams and cables, their intertwining leading to goodness knows where, the creatures with a strange collection of eyes and legs, the bright sunburst looking more like molten steel at a steelworks, than the sun we see every day. The harsh yellow makes an outstanding background for the story of a little creature finding his wings. Teacher's notes are available. Themes: Risk taking, Overcoming fear, Disability.
Fran Knight

BUY IT ON booktopia
Archived Blog Entries