Review Blog

Jul 19 2017

The naughty naughty baddies by Mark Sperring and David Tazzyman

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Bloomsbury Publishing, 2017. ISBN 9781408849736
(Ages: 2 - 6) Highly recommended. Picture Book. A highly improbable and amusing tale whereby 4 baddies hatch a 'dastardly' plot to steal the spots of the Queen's little dog amongst other minor naughtiness like the sticking out of tongues and the blowing of raspberries. What greater fun is there to be had than to see oneself as a 'baddy' creeping around with your friends in a quest to make as much mischief as possible? And to put oneself in a position of power over someone as powerful as the Queen herself is definitely irresistible to the average 4 or 5 year old!
There are a number of powerful words used in the text that would bear discussion with the young reader, 'dastardly' and 'fiendish' being great additions to anyone's vocab. Delightful, 'diabolically dreadful' and 'dastardly' alliteration is used throughout, and that wonderful repetition of the 'naughty, naughty baddies' is sure draw in the young reader when read aloud.
Creeping is at the forefront of the baddies' skills with 'sneaking' coming in at close second. My three year old granddaughter is quite convinced that her creeping skills are vastly superior to any adult's ability to spot her little body wending its way slowly along the lounge room curtains. If you creep well enough you can get away with anything and steal the spots off the Queen's doggy, indeed the 4 baddies do. What happens as a result of this improbable crime needs to read to be believed.
The ending was a little up in the air for me - not a particularly satisfactory resolution with the tables turned on our most powerful leaders. It may leave the little reader wondering exactly what happened.
Elizabeth Avery

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