Running Rhino by Mwenye Hadithi and Adrienne Kennaway
|Running Rhino by Mwenye Hadithi and Adrienne Kennaway|
|Category: For Sharing|
|Reviewer: Ruth Ng|
|Summary: A lively story that feels like an African folktale with lovely, colourful illustrations.|
|Buy? Maybe||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 32||Date: November 2010|
|Publisher: Hodder Children's Books|
Rhino runs everywhere. And as he runs, he leaves a wake of devastation in his path. The other animals are fed up of this rampant running and so Lion confronts him, telling him he must stop. Rhino refuses and challenges anyone to try and stop him. Out of all the animals it is little Tickbird who takes up his challenge, with interesting results!
This is a nice book to read aloud, with plenty of opportunities for putting on voices (I enjoyed being the Lion) and Rhino's obstinate responses provide plenty of humour. It's probably best for older toddlers (or very patient little ones) as it has a proper storyline to follow rather than being a simple picture book. But it does provide a nice introduction to various different African animals, seen in their natural habitat. The language is easy to understand throughout the book, apart from the moment when Tickbird appears carrying three 'gourds,' which required a brief interlude whilst my daughter and I talked about what a gourd actually is. I like interesting words being thrown into picture books however, and so I'm currently waiting for her to find an opportunity to use 'gourd' in conversation!
The end of the story sees Tickbird saying she will sit on Rhino's back now and then, and that she'll give him a little peck to warn him about running, telling him if there is actually any danger and any need for him to run. It definitely has the feel of a folktale, a sort of 'how the rhino made friends with the Tickbird' though it doesn't have the style of Kipling, or the humour of the Cbeebies cartoon Tinga Tinga Tales. Still, it's a nice enough story and I liked how Tickbird ends up acting like a little conscience for Rhino, giving him a peck if he forgets himself and starts running around again. I know of one or two little boys who could benefit from having a Tickbird on their shoulders...
The pictures of the African plains and animals are lovely, with beautiful sunset colours and realistic-looking animals. Well, realistic except for their eyes which look more like cartoon eyes, but this adds something more human to their expressions and makes the book a bit more fun and accessible for little ones.
My four year old daughter enjoyed the story, although she hasn't requested to hear it again hence my suggestion that this might be better to borrow than to buy. I think perhaps the fact that it's a rhino in the story might be part of the problem however - there are a whole series of stories about different African animals by this author, and perhaps one of the others would have been a bigger hit with her. It's hard to feel much love for a grumpy rhino! It makes for a nice bedtime story though - nothing scary and just the right sort of length for a weary parent!
I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to The Bookbag.
Further reading suggestion:
Fans of Rhinos would do well to take a look at Chief Rhino To The Rescue by Sam Lloyd or you might like to try Cross Crocodile by Mwenye Hadithi and Adrienne Kennaway.
You can read more book reviews or buy Running Rhino by Mwenye Hadithi and Adrienne Kennaway at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
You can read more book reviews or buy Running Rhino by Mwenye Hadithi and Adrienne Kennaway at Amazon.com.
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