Fat Ferdie by Pamela Allen
Penguin, Australia, 2013. ISBN 9780670077168.
(Age: Pre-school and early reader) Fat Ferdie is a captivating addition to Pamela Allen's long list of contributions to children's literature. Whilst some may be concerned that Ferdie is called fat, I am sure if we have survived Mr McGee and the Biting Flea, Fat Ferdie will be as popular with parents and youngsters alike.
Fat Ferdie is not the most handsome character Pamela Allen has created. In fact he is a fearsome green monster with sharp fangs and a taste for 'raw red meat'. . . any living creature will do. When he has eaten all the available food he is forced to take to his boat and find another island.
Desperate for food, he comes across three children who immediately run away. Just when it looks like the youngest is about to become Ferdie's dinner he is whisked up into a pear tree and safety by his scared siblings. Ferdie is obviously not very happy about this turn of events and is less pleased as the children use the pears as missiles so in a fit of rage he shakes the tree. The children fall out and run home whilst Ferdie is bombarded by pears. Still hungry Ferdie tries a pear and lo and behold he is converted to a pear eater.
The rhyming text matched with Allen's familiar illustrations which give life, movement and drama to the story will ensure that Ferdie becomes a favourite with the preschool and early reader.