Book Review

PoP: Go to Sleep or I Let Loose the Leopard by Steve Cole & Bruce Ingman and Too Hot to Hug! By Steve Smallman & Cee Biscoe.

PoP Tuesdays on Juniper’s Jungle bring two reviews of picture books.

Go to Sleep or I Let Loose the Leopard by Steve Cole & Bruce Ingman (illustrator). Random House Children’s.
GoToSleepIt is Joe and Ellie’s bedtime. But Joe and Ellie are not in bed.

The New Babysiteer has one last trick up her sleeve: “Go to sleep – or I let loose the LEOPARD!”

But she couldn’t, she wouldn’t… would she?

A hilarious going-to-bed book with a twist in the tail!

I’d heard good things about this book so when I saw it in the library I grabbed it. I must admit that to begin with I was wondering what I was missing, and then it got better and better and the last few pages were just downright brilliant. I don’t want to say too much about the plot – the blurb refers to there being a twist and it’s definitely one worth leaving unspoilt. It was definitely one I thoroughly appreciated and one I could imagine sharing with a young audience for the first time. I think lots of parents will enjoy sharing this book with their children who are reluctant to go to bed – its message works really nicely.

The illustrations in the book are really interesting, within the same picture some elements are fully coloured, some are line drawings with white middles and others are line drawings against whatever the background colour is. Whilst I found it interesting I wouldn’t say it was really to my personal tastes. I did however very much like the use of typography within the book, there are lots of different font sizes and formats to add to the reading experience, these all work really well.

Too Hot to Hug! by Steve Smallman & Cee Biscoe (illustrator). Little Tiger Press.
TooHotToHugWhen Rupert finds a golden egg, he takes it home to show to Mum and Dad. Then suddenly: Tap! Tap! Crack! out hatches a baby fire dragon!

From then on, Crumpet the dragon is Rupert’s best friend. But soon Crumpet starts to grow. And as he grows, he gets … HOTTER!

I was drawn to this book by its beautiful cover, when I looked closer and saw that the cute dragon was crying I knew I had to take it home with me. I have to say it’s an even cuter story than I’d expected, definitely the sort of book I want to hug after reading. The story follows Rupert, whilst trying to find firewood to keep his family warm he instead finds a glowing, warm egg that soon becomes Crumpet the baby fire dragon. Seeing how Crumpet settles in to family life is just lovely, and when things go wrong you find yourself willing them to find a good solution.

Cee Biscoe’s illustrations add a lot to the reading experience. They have a softness to them that makes them very appealing, and the use of colour throughout is excellent. I particularly loved the way Crumpet seemed to glow right off the page and the way his expressions are drawn. I think I’d quite like my own Crumpet, particularly now I know what to do when a fire dragon gets too hot!

Both books featured in this post were borrowed from my local library.

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