Little lunch: The bubblers by Danny Katz and Mitch Vane

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A welcome reissue of the wonderful series of stories about kids in the playground at ’little lunch’, recess time, will enthral a new generation of early readers. Each story in the easily held books concerns a group of kids in the same class: Manny, Attica, Rory, Melanie, Max and Elsa, Batty, Amba, Debra-Jo Woo and Tamara Noodle. Sometimes several of their parents appear as well, as in the first story, when Mrs Gonsha turns up with an inedible pavlova for her children’s birthday. The whole class is invited to attend under the tree near the oval, and when she goes off and they sample the pavlova, the problem then is how to get rid of it. But her children are the twins, Max and Elsa, so another Pav appears.

The second story involves the lost and found box, a receptacle for all things missing from the classrooms., while the third, 'The bubblers', has the children making up and telling jokes ranging from riddles to knock knock and word substitution jokes. Each will delight and amused and encourage readers to think about appropriateness of jokes and who to tell them to, as poor of Mrs Gomsha again becomes the recipient of a less than savoury joke. Disgusting jokes, head turns that end with losing your glasses and getting rid of an abominable pavlova, all happens in the fifteen minutes morning break.

Each story is about twelve pages long, liberally sprinkled with very funny illustrations, and the whole is ended off with a little lunch bag of puzzles and spot the difference pages, jokes and word finds.

Sure to please, especially as there are three more in the set, the Little lunch series was made into a TV series as well and is available on Youtube and Netflix.

Themes: Recess, School, Humour, Jokes, Family.

Fran Knight