Best Bedtime Stories Ever by Richard Scarry

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Best Bedtime Stories Ever by Richard Scarry

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Category: For Sharing
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Ruth Ng
Reviewed by Ruth Ng
Summary: A collection of classic Richard Scarry stories - countless funny details to look at for hours!
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 64 Date: January 2011
Publisher: Harper Collins Children's Books
ISBN: 978-0007413560

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Richard Scarry's style is instantly recognisable. I grew up reading his books so this collection is a trip down memory lane! Here there are six stories, about Huckle the cat, Lowly the worm, Mr Raccoon and Mr Frumble the pig, plus a counting section at the back. The stories are a mix of the usual text plus picture format as well as those full page spreads that Scarry is known for where he labels different parts of the picture and there are hundreds of little details to spot.

I think one of the best things about this book is its re-readability. The pictures are often so very busy that you see something new every time you read the book. They make great rainy afternoon reading, with lots to look at and discuss together. I think it's best for those around the 3 to 6 years age range, with younger ones needing someone to share the story with them and older ones perhaps being happy to sit and spot things quite happily by themselves and try out some of the words too.

This collection gives us a story about Huckle the cat experiencing a very windy day in which my favourite part is Huckle sneezing so hard he blows his little sister out of her bed! We then take a visit to the big city and get to spend time looking over various full page pictures of the train station, a busy street, the television studios etc. The story of the summer picnic brings more bad weather, this time it's heavy rain that everyone needs to escape from, and this is followed by my favourite story in the book, Mr Frumble's Bad Day. Mr Frumble the pig starts his day badly when he forgets to open his garage doors before reversing out. It goes downhill from there with a shopping calamity, trouble in the library, breakages in the clothes shop, leaking washing machines in the laundrette, a fire disaster in the restaurant...poor Mr Frumble!

The final two stories see a visit to the sea, and another rather unlucky day, this time for Mr Raccoon. The end of the book has a lovely counting story about Willy Bunny ending with the opportunity to count 100 fireflies on the last page - if only my daughter could count that high, it would be a lovely way to keep her quiet for a while!

I think the stories work well for boys or for girls, and they're not too long for bedtime reading (though you might get held up by some of the illustrations!) You can, just occasionally spot a few Americanisms, but nothing too intrusive. I'm so glad they're reissuing these lovely stories and that my little girl can enjoy them just as I did as a child.

I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to The Bookbag.

Further reading suggestion: For more Richard Scarry delight try What Do People Do All Day?

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