Betty Goes Bananas by Steve Antony

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Betty Goes Bananas by Steve Antony

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Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Zoe Morris
Reviewed by Zoe Morris
Summary: The kids will love this book about a naughty ape who goes bananas for bananas
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: August 2014
Publisher: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 978-0192738158

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Betty is a chimp. Chimps like bananas. But did you ever think about how they cope with the small, yet complicated matter of, PEELING the yellow treats? It’s not easy, and when Betty has a prolonged struggle a strop ensues. Or, as to quote the title, she goes bananas.

This is a simple, repetitive book with a circular tale: Betty wants something, she doesn’t get it and so she cries and kicks and screams until someone helps her. If that makes you think that tantrums are being rewarded, in a way you’d be right, but Mr Toucan, her repeated saviour, is keen to show her how to do things rather than just do them for her. Teach a man to fish and he’ll never go hungry, teach a chimp to peel a banana and she’ll be happy, for a while at least.

Although as an adult I wasn’t drawn to this book, and the Boy quite astutely noted that it should be renamed Betty needs a slap, the kids loved it! There’s something so fun about a character being naughty and believe me, it’s clear to even the littlest of little ones that Betty is misbehaving. So they giggled as she stropped and shook their heads in agreement that NO, they would never be that naughty themselves. As for the final page….well, let’s just say the fact that Mr Toucan was making a swift exit was spotted immediately.

The illustrations in this book are bright and hard to miss – the pages are a sunny yellow and Betty’s pink dress looks lovely against her black fur. There’s not a lot going on – backgrounds are absent and details are minimal – but this really draws you to the characters and their features.

Recommended for the pre-school brigade. Caregivers might tolerate it rather than love it but it’s handily short and, well, the target audience love it, so that’s all there is to say, really.

Thanks go to the publishers for supplying this book.

Ding Dong Gorilla by Michelle Robinson and Leonie Lord and Good Night, Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann feature more fun with this type of animal.

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Buy Betty Goes Bananas by Steve Antony at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Betty Goes Bananas by Steve Antony at


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