Newest Review: ... cardboard that will withstand some playing with. A bit about I'm not Cute is a story about an owl whom everyone thinks is cute, much to... more
But ALL babies are cute!
I'm Not Cute! - Jonathan Allen
Member Name: i_am_joy
I'm Not Cute! - Jonathan Allen
Advantages: A lovely story, suitable from a young age to reading level, beautiful illustrations
Disadvantages: You simply have to do the voices!
One of my two year old granddaughter's favourite books at the moment is I'm Not Cute by Jonathan Allen, which she received in a Bookstart pack from the doctor's surgery last month.
I'm Not Cute tells the story of a baby owl who has gone to explore the woods. As he goes on his travels he meets a range of animals, all of whom think Baby Owl is the cutest thing they have ever seen and give him a great big hug.
Of course, Baby Owl doesn't want to be cute and proclaims himself to be "a huge, sleek hunting machine with great big see-in-the-dark eyes." Only when his Mum comes along and agrees that, no, Baby Owl is not cute, Baby Owl thinks for a moment then throws himself on the floor screaming: "But I am cute! I am! I AM!"
Isn't that just the story of any toddler? I know my granddaughter is all for being a 'big girl' until her mummy agrees with her about it, she then reverts to being a baby in an instant!
I'm Not Cute! is written and illustrated in such a lovely way. The wording is so sweet and an absolute joy to read, I particularly like it that the story is so funny because as the reading adult I can appreciate it on so many more levels than my granddaughter.
If there's one complaint about I'm Not Cute! it's that the story cannot be told properly if you're not prepared to do the voices. You really have to be able to speak like Baby Owl or Squirrel or Fox because there is so much speech involved in the story. My son in law sometimes reads this to my granddaughter and he point blank REFUSES to speak like a baby owl, well, the story just completely loses it's appeal! In the gruff voice of a grown man the story could be a page from The Times, however, Nanny isn't embarrassed to imitate Mummy Owl so all's well and good!
I would say this book would appeal to a wide range of ages. From as soon as your little one is ready to have a story read to them they will enjoy the story. The main thing here is that the various animals all give Baby Owl a 'great big hug' so there's plenty of opportunity for interaction between the reader and baby/toddler. My granddaughter and I have a hug whenever the story calls for it and I can imagine how much she would have enjoyed it as a younger baby.
My neice visited last week with her four year old, Gemma is just learning to read and she loved I'm Not Cute! as the words used in the story were mainly ones she already knew. She found the story very sweet and coo-ed so much over Baby Owl that it was obvious that the very plain moral behind this tale had gotten through.
And the moral? Of course the moral is that despite his protestations, Baby Owl is very cute indeed! The illustrations all scream 'cute'. Those of you with a toddler in your life will really appreciate the pictures because seeing Baby Owl having his increasingly angry tantrums will immediately remind you of the terrible twos! We are currently suffering the complete defiance of my granddaughter and Baby Owl is just like her; sometimes I feel as though I could say the grass was green to Hollie and she would still argue, she is a real Miss Independant. But if it suits her to be a baby, well..... "But I am cute! I am! I AM!"
I really love the story, but am equally impressed with how well the book is constructed. It's a board book so ideal for toddlers, the pages are all still tight to the spine and this is after four weeks of almost constant reading. Whenever I visit she knows I will read her a book and just lately whenever I send her to her bookshelf to pick something out it's I'm Not Cute! as she loves both the story and the characters.
I think most toddlers love animals and this is another plus point for I'm Not Cute!. The animals are all so friendly looking and even when Baby Owl is having a paddy he is still adorable, you so want to agree with him when he wants to be grown up but (like your own baby) you are fully aware of how young and vulnerable he really is.
I completely recommend this book. It's absolutely enchanting. From Amazon you can buy a board copy for £4.74, which I would say is reasonable for such a lovely story that I'm sure any young child would love.
Summary: Recommended! Meet Baby Owl and decide for yourself, but I bet you will love him!