The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Water by Gemma Merino

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The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Water by Gemma Merino

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Category: For Sharing
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Margaret Young
Reviewed by Margaret Young
Summary: A heart-warming story for children who were born to fly.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: June 2013
Publisher: Macmillan Children's Books
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-1447214717

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Longlisted for the 2014 CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal

'The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Water' begins with a Mother crocodile carrying a basket of blue eggs. But one of the eggs isn't quite like the others, and when the little crocs hatch, one crocodile isn't quite like the others. All of the other crocodiles love the water, but the odd one out prefers to climb trees. The other crocodiles were not cruel, but he felt left out as they all played water games. He tried to fit in, but he just wasn't meant to be a water creature. His attempts to be something other than what nature intended are touching, but also terribly funny. Soon the reason for the little crocodile's dislike of water becomes apparent - he isn't a crocodile at all and he wasn't meant to swim - he was meant to fly.

This book is filled with humour, but it is touching as well. It is one of those books that leaves you with a warm fuzzy feeling and a smile on your face. 'The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Water' is a beautiful story about finding your own wings. It is perfect for children who feel like they just don't fit in. It shows them sometimes being like everyone else isn't the most important thing. Sometimes you just need to stretch your wings and be yourself. Surprisingly, the little dragon does not go off to find other dragons. The crocodiles are his family, different or not and they all happily accept him for what he is. In so many stories, the character who is different must go away to live with others like himself. This book says it is OK to be different. Being unique is wonderful.

My four year old absolutely loves this book, but even my eight year old found it funny. They especially liked the part where the crocodile's reasons for disliking water are given, and my youngest loved the happy ending. With short clear text in a good sized font and a story so good children will want to listen to it until they know it by heart, it would have some value for children who are starting to read on their own. This book is best though, as book for sharing. It is a delight to read and a lovely story that parents will enjoy as much as the children - at least the first ten times or so. In addition to a wonderful story, the illustrations are really exceptional as well. The author/illustrator has a real gift for capturing emotion in the expression of the main character, and the pictures really add to the humour and fun with this book.

I honestly cannot fault this book on anything. My first thought on finishing this story was to visit Amazon and see if the author had written any other books we could buy. Unfortunately this is the author's first and only picture book, but the last page certainly leaves an opening for another story and my son has already asked if there will be another book based on the last page. After reading this, Gemma Merino is certainly a name I will watch for, and should another book become available, I wouldn't be long buying a copy. I can not imagine this being anything less than a smash hit. I just hope her next book is already well in the works.

If this book appeals then you might also like to try:

Tyrannosaurus Drip by Julia Donaldson

Troll Swap by Leigh Hodgkinson

Puff the Magic Dragon by Peter Yarrow, Lenny Lipton and Eric Puybaret

The Cow Who Climbed a Tree by Gemma Merino

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Buy The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Water by Gemma Merino at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Water by Gemma Merino at Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
Buy The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Water by Gemma Merino at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Water by Gemma Merino at


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