Bella is going to have a very busy day at nursery – but what about baby brother Bob? He gets to stay at home with Mummy, and Bella can’t help but imagine all the wonderful things he’ll get to do. But Bella discovers there’s some good things about being bigger and going to nursery after all, and maybe she’ll be surprised about what Bob and Mummy have been doing without her…
It was a joy to hear Rebecca Patterson read us this book at the Random House Spring Showcase. How exciting to hear the author read with the emphasis and expression she intended it to have. I really enjoyed bringing it home to my children and passing her rendition on to them myself, but if you haven’t had this chance don’t be put off, the layout of the text and the use of bold and large sized print in places makes it easy and a delight to read aloud. It also fully expresses the way a young child might think and speak about the things they are experiencing.
This story follows Bella in her time at Nursery, spending some of it convinced that brother Bob is having a much better time at home, until she gets caught up in pre-school activities and forgets to think about Bob, then she goes home to find out if her assumptions were correct. This is so true to life, it fits the conversations I have with both my girls who each think the other is probably having more fun than they are. There is real insight into the world of a pre-schooler.
It is also a funny story, the humour is in the everyday things, banana’s with SPOTS, licking foam, being the noisiest teapot. There is humour in the pictures, the facial expressions, the situations and the pictures of Bella’s thoughts. The illustrations are bright and colourful. I enjoyed the fact that they started right at the beginning before there was any text and continued after the story had finished. It gave us an extra insight into Bella’s day and also made my girls look more closely at the pictures to try and see what they told us about the story.
Verdict: This is a lovely funny story with a sweet ending and on a theme that any child with a brother or sister can identify with.
Reviewed by Helen