THE GRUF­FALO’S CHILD

- JU­LIA DON­ALD­SON IL­LUS­TRA­TIONS BY AXEL SCH­EF­FLER

The Star (St. Lucia) - - BOOK REVIEW - By Theresa Eli­box

It is said that ev­ery­one is a reader once they have found the per­fect book. If you are try­ing to get your lit­tle one more en­gaged, es­pe­cially over this ex­tended week­end break, this may just be the per­fect read.

The story is about a great, big Gruf­falo who tells his tales about the mys­ter­ies and ter­rors of the deep, dark woods. Strict in­struc­tions are given to the Gruf­falo’s child to stay clear of these woods but, just like you, be­ing told not to do some­thing makes it more of a curiosity than a warn­ing. The lit­tle Gruf­falo is now cu­ri­ous and, bored with be­ing in her cave, de­cides to find out about the great ter­ror that lives and roams in the deep, dark woods. She is de­ter­mined to find out for her­self.

Armed with the in­for­ma­tion from her fa­ther, the Gruf­falo’s child sets off on the ad­ven­ture of find­ing a crea­ture that would fit the de­scrip­tions. She uses her skills and fol­lows clues of claw marks and tracks in the snow. The Gruf­falo’s child en­coun­ters many mar­velous crea­tures but none with the full pro­file of a ter­ri­ble mon­strous crea­ture. She starts to lose hope of it ac­tu­ally ex­ist­ing.

Through­out her jour­ney the Gruf­falo’s child makes sure to re­as­sure her­self that she isn’t scared of any crea­ture that re­sides in the deep, dark woods in caves, holes, tree tops or even un­der the snow.

The Gruf­falo’s child be­comes hun­gry and tired from all the en­coun­ters and finds a lit­tle mouse on her path that she thinks would make a tasty meal. But this lit­tle, seem­ingly pow­er­less mouse in­sists that she should wait be­fore eat­ing him and tells the Gruf­falo’s child she should meet his friend.

To her sur­prise the friend looks mighty strong and has whiskers that are as tough as wires, eyes as red as a ter­ri­ble flame and a long scaly tail! I don’t think that the Gruf­falo’s child will ever go roam­ing through the deep, dark woods any more!

Far from be­ing scared by the story, your child will love the il­lus­tra­tions which beau­ti­fully de­pict the an­i­mals and places. And be­cause of the sing-song, al­most po­etic read, kids will mem­o­rise ev­ery line in a jiffy.

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