Frog on a Log? by Kes Gray and illustrated by Jim Field, hardback picture book, published by Scholastic Press in 2015.
The cat insists that the frog sits on a log. Why? Because frogs must sit on logs. The cat goes on to explain that cats sit on mats, hares on chairs, mules on stools…. and on and on.
This wonderfully silly rhyming story is accompanied by cute and funny illustrations. Some of the animals get to sit on some rather uncomfortable items, including irons, forks and poles! My favourite picture is the wizard with his lizard playing the flute with the newt, and the magnifying glass that allows us to see the fleas sitting on peas. The frog can be found in each picture too.
Frog on a Log? is a great read-aloud book which my pre-schoolers love. It is funny, entertaining and can be read again and again. My boys like all the rhyming and it has encouraged them to think of other words that rhyme. We loved the ending!
I highly recommend Frog on a Log? for pre-school and lower primary school students.
*Frog on a Log? has also been published under the title Oi Frog!
Cyclops by Rachel Meehan, e-book, 53 pages, published by Cherry House Publishing in 2015.
Cyclops lives on a beautiful island which is invaded by evil pirates looking for a place to rest and relax. Frightened by the giant with one eye, the pirates decide to capture him and sell him to a traveling circus. He becomes a prisoner to be gawked at, prodded and tested by underhanded scientists.
Cyclops is an illustrated ballad, and is the first book in the Chronicles of Curious Creatures series. It is cleverly written with lyrical text; I got into quite a rhythm as I read. It described all the characters and locations well and with humour. I really liked that the evil pirate was called I.M. Mean!
The text was white on a black background, which I normally find more difficult to read, but it suited this story quite well. The size of the text also changed through the story, which just worked. There were lovely coloured illustrations throughout. I particularly like the way the villains are depicted in the pictures.
Cyclops is suitable for middle primary school students to lower high school students. It is a good story for sharing aloud too, I just love the way the story rolls off my tongue! More books in this series will be available soon!
*I received this book as a digital copy from the author, who asked me for an honest review of this book. I did not receive any other remuneration, and the review is composed entirely of my own opinions.
The Cow Tripped Over the Moon by Tony Wilson and illustrated by Laura Wood, paperback picture book, published by Scholastic Australia in 2015.
Everyone knows the rhyme ‘Hey Diddle Diddle’, it has been a popular nursery rhyme for many years. The cow in the rhyme gets to jump over the moon, which is quite an impressive feat, and must have taken a lot of practice to perfect. In The Cow Tripped Over the Moon, the cow is on her training journey to make it over the moon. There are many attempts with trips, mis-jumps and wrong turns, but surely she must get it right in the end?
I had never considered the effort the cow must have put in to be able to jump over the moon, but I’m so glad that this author did. This book is hilarious! All my kids love it, and I love reading it to them. When the dog laughs so hard that he pukes, I thought my kids might do the same! The cow getting stuck in a sand dune was pretty funny.
The lyrical text just rolls off the tongue, and is complemented by humourous illustrations on every page. The cow even gets to wear sweatpants and a sweatband for her training! The text is clear and simple, making it easy for young readers to read on their own.
The Cow Tripped Over the Moon is a fantastic book for reading aloud. Though suitable for children from toddlers through primary school, it is especially good for preschoolers and lower primary school children. My kindergartner likes reading this one independently too.
* The Cow Tripped Over the Moon is shortlisted for the 2016 Children’s Book Council of Australia Book of the Year in the Early Childhood category.