His Royal Tinyness : A terrible true story by Sally Lloyd-Jones
Ill. by David Roberts. Walker Books, 2017. ISBN 9781406324662
(Age: 4-8) Highly recommended. Humour. Siblings. Babies. Told from the point of view of "the most beautifulest, cleverest, ever-so-kindest Princess with long, flowing wondrous hair," this is the tale of a family that was happy until a new ruler was born, "His Royal Highness, King Baby". The story goes on to describe the terrible trials that Princess Marianna has to put up with, as His Royal Tinyness burps his way to his first birthday, when all the family's friends and relatives meet to celebrate this wondrous occasion.
Told in a very amusing narrative, the first year of the baby is described, while the little girl, resplendent in yellow tights on her head to denote her beautiful hair, learns to put up with no longer being the centre of attention in her kingdom. The addition of funny little sayings in parentheses like Marianna describing herself as (lovely in all her ways) greatly enhances the humour and will have readers laughing out loud. The ending is tender and loving and leaves the reader feeling uplifted as the little girl shows her love for her brother.
David Roberts' illustration are fabulous. I loved the retro images of the parents in their 70's outfits, bell bottom trousers on the father and hippy dresses and clogs on the mother but what really stood out for me was the addition of child-like drawings that Marianna drew showing the life that enfolds around her and just what she thought of the progress of her baby brother.
This would be a welcome addition to any house where a new baby is expected and would provide a humorous discussion point and read aloud in the classroom where families are being discussed.