Giants by Mij Kelly and Nick Maland

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Giants by Mij Kelly and Nick Maland

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Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: A gentle look at the dangers of stereotyping and jumping to conclusions makes the point the we're all alike even if we look rather different. Recommended.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: July 2008
Publisher: Hodder Children's Books
ISBN: 978-0340893319

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Sweet Pea and Boogaloo are out in the forest one day when Sweet Pea asks if giants look just like them, only bigger. Boogaloo knows that they're entirely different:

They're revolting creatures.
They have hideous features.
They have far too many teeth
sticking out of their jaws and their hands are just like claws

So, a good, unbiased opinion there, then. Sweet Pea wants to know more and asks if giants are kind but Boogaloo has his opinions here too:

Giants are horrible through and through. They don't lift a finger to help me and you.

Boogaloo has a few other prejudices too about what giants eat and whether or not they have feelings. It's only when an ill-advised kick fells a giant that Sweet Pea gets cross with him and he comes to realise that giants are just like me and you, only bigger.

In a day and age when so many people are judged not by what they do but by what they look like and so many other factors over which they have no control, this is a timely look at the danger of jumping to conclusions. It's a gentle story and the message is delivered with a light touch and some humour.

The story is great fun to read aloud (lots of it even scans rather well) and to share with a child because Nick Maland's wonderful illustrations mean that you're aware throughout the book that a giant is never that far away – it's rather like those Look behind you! moments at the pantomime. Sometimes you see a hand, sometimes a foot or a face. Sweet Pea is obviously more aware that things are not quite as they seem but Boogaloo is oblivious. To his credit he does his best to make amends once he realises that he was in the wrong – another useful lesson delivered without preaching.

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

For another story where things are not quite what they seem we think that you might enjoy Colin and the Wrong Shadow by Leigh Hodgkinson.

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Buy Giants by Mij Kelly and Nick Maland at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Giants by Mij Kelly and Nick Maland at


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