Ralf by Jean Jullien

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Ralf by Jean Jullien

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Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Ruth Ng
Reviewed by Ruth Ng
Summary: Lots of doggy silliness for little ones to enjoy!
Buy? yes Borrow? yes
Pages: 56 Date: February 2016
Publisher: Frances Lincoln Children's Books
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 9781847808189

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I'm rather partial to sausage dogs. I met one in Japan once who I would quite happily have tucked into my suitcase to sneak back home. Ralf the sausage dog is just as endearing as these pups usually are, although he is also just as troublesome. For a little dog, he manages to take up quite a lot of space, make a lot of noise, and generally make a nuisance of himself (as most dogs do really). Yet when suddenly the family find themselves in great danger, it is Ralf who saves the day!

This isn't a story for realists. The heroic action relies on poor Ralf, on finding his bottom is stuck in the dog flap, but that the house is on fire, stretching his long, long body so that he can get through the house, get out of the window, find the firemen, and rescue everyone. My little boy did give me a 'really?' look, as we saw Ralf's body extending further and further, but he let it pass, primarily to find out what would happen at the end I think! Ralf is, by then, even longer than he was before, but his family are so glad that he saved their lives that they merely declare they will just have to build a bigger house!

Dog lovers will certainly identify with parts of this story, including Ralf snuggling up in the parental bed, right in the middle of course! When he's shooed away he manages to find himself a cosy spot in the bath...right when someone wants to have a shower! I liked Ralf a lot, with his sweet pointy nose and long body. The family in the story are drawn very simplistically, but they evoke a lot of smiles, and it's always obvious what's happening thanks to the very clear illustrations. The colours are unusual for a children's picture book, with lots of olive green and orange, and rather dark colours in places, but sometimes it's nice to read something that looks a little different, and this will fill that spot on your bedtime reading shelves.

Further reading suggestion: You might also enjoy reading Hoot Owl, Master of Disguise by Sean Taylor and Jean Jullien or for classic doggy delights rush to see a copy of Hairy Maclary by Lynley Dodd.

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Buy Ralf by Jean Jullien at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Ralf by Jean Jullien at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
Buy Ralf by Jean Jullien at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Ralf by Jean Jullien at Amazon.com.


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