Angry Cookie by Laura Dockrill

cover image

Ill. by Maria Karipodou. Walker Books, 2018. ISBN 9781406383089
(Age: 4-8) Recommended. Themes: Anger, Friendship, Feelings, Self-worth. The cover on this book is an intense fluoro orange! It will shout at young readers from the shelf, and ironically, the central character does just that towards the reader. Angry Cookie is aptly named . . . he is fuming and really does not want the reader to keep poking their nose into his business and turning the page. However, of course we do! Eventually getting rid of the reader seems like a waste of time, so he tries to explain why he is angry in order that we understand the reason for his poor temper. A recorder playing incessantly, an embarrassing haircut, an attack on his 'cookie' body, a missing ice-cream treat all compound his ill humour, but eventually he realises that they are all symptomatic of feeling ignored and unheard. The persistent reader is of course still 'paying attention' and 'listening' so is able to restore Angry Cookie's sense of self-worth and give him a change of humour and a new way of dealing with life.
This book joins many others of similar ilk (Don't let the pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems; Don't Open this Book by Andy Lee) with the book's characters engaging with the reader and almost teasing them to make a response. Young children will enjoy this almost inherent interactivity. The colourful and quirky illustrations by Maria Karipidou will also appeal, not because they are detailed, but because they are cartoon-like and most characters are food items. (Cookie's hairdresser is a banana!) Cookie's defused anger also gives an opportunity to discuss with children about their own responses to feeling angry.
Recommended for ages 4 - 8
Carolyn Hull