Newest Review: ... can see the lion and written beside him in very small letters is the word, “Shhh!” ***The Illustrations*** I’m not really surprised that... more
Roar As Loud As You Can!!!
How Loud is a Lion? - Clare Beaton
Member Name: belfin
How Loud is a Lion? - Clare Beaton
Advantages: Great comparisons
Although this book is credited to Clare Beaton on the front of the book, she is only responsible for the illustrations and it is actually Stella Blackstone who has provided the story to go with the pictures.
Some of you might be familiar with this partnership already, through one of my other reviews for a book called Secret Seahorse where you had to find a little bit of the hiding seahorse on each page.
The story starts by describing how a couple of different animals feel to the touch.
“Parrots are feathery, porcupines are prickly,
But how loud is a lion? Shhh! Listen!”
Each page is formatted the same way with a couple of animals being compared and then the question of how loud the lion is. Included in the list of animals are the spotty cheetah, the happy hoopoes, the crafty crocodiles and the hefty rhinos.
Looking through the book you can see little bits of the lion are hidden on each page. There might just be a tail, part or his mane or his paws at the edge of the page to find.
Right at the end of the book we are suddenly shown a single word on a page, written in very large capital letters,
On the next page we can see the lion and written beside him in very small letters is the word,
I’m not really surprised that the illustrator gets credited with this book as she has done a magnificent job. As with Secret Seahorse, the pictures are made up from collages of felt, buttons, beads and wool stitching. It is all very intricate and clever. The colours of the fabrics used are bright and often it’s only when you look closely that you can pick out how each creature is made up.
I am really impressed by this slightly different style of book. My son really enjoyed Secret Seahorse and with this in mind he was instantly attracted to this school library book. As soon as he handed it to me, he said that it was like the seahorse book and that he couldn’t wait to read it. This is probably due to the fact that he loves anything to do with Lion King at the moment and roaring like a lion is something he does on a regular basis whilst playing at home with his friends. He certainly loves to roar with the lion at the end of the book.
I love the way the illustrations are made up in this clever book. The intricate stitching and delicately placed sequins and beading obviously require a lot of work but the result is amazing. You almost expect to feel the different textures of the fabrics on the page and it does in fact look a bit like a touch and feel book.
Finding things in books is a great way to get your child’s observations skills motivated. The lion often just has a small tail showing so your child has to be careful to spot it. The part of the lion showing changes places on each turning page too, which also encourages children to use their eyes more.
The way the animals are compared in this book is very good too. Not only are differences in their appearances pointed out, but their demeanour and behaviour is discussed too, pointing out how gentle the giraffes can be and how cheeky the chimps are. This is something that is often forgotten in this type of comparison book but I think it’s a great way of showing children that it’s not only looks that can be different but that everyone has a different personality too.
There are a lot of similar sounds at the start of words in this book too and I found this a great help at the moment as I am working with my son at the moment with sounding out letters and asking him to find words that start with the same letter.
An added bonus with this book is that the animals aren’t all the usual ones you tend to find in children’s books. We can see that there are hoopoes and zorillas and this will obviously get your child asking what type of animal they are. For those of you who don’t know, a hoopoe is an exotically stripey bird and a zorilla is a type of weasel that looks a bit like a skunk. Both can be found in Africa, as can all the other animals in this book, which leads me on to another discussion point that you can have with your child when discussing where different animals live.
This really is a great book between the unusual illustrations and the clever comparisons. I’m sure any pre-schooler will love it along with some slightly older children too.
***Price & Availability***
The hardback is available for £9.99 but can be found at WH Smith for only £6.59. The paperback version that we have is a little bit more difficult to get your hands on but I have found it to buy new for the publishing price of £4.99 from a company called www.smartieparties.co.uk. You can also pick up second hand copies from sites such as Amazon marketplace and Ebay.
Hardback ISBN No. 184148895X
Paperback ISBN No. 1841489034
Summary: Fantastic collage illustrations