Don't Worry Douglas by David Melling

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Don't Worry Douglas by David Melling

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Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Ruth Ng
Reviewed by Ruth Ng
Summary: What should you do when something bad happens and you're too scared to tell your mum or dad? This sweet, funny story settles those fears in a lovely, gentle way.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: April 2011
Publisher: Hodder Children's Books
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-0340999806

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Some of you may have already met Douglas, the rather dopey, yet endearing bear, in his first adventure Hugless Douglas. Here he's back again, this time the proud recipient of a brand new woolly hat, a gift from his Dad. But what should he do when he has a bit of trouble and the hat starts to unravel?

It is whilst Douglas is out, showing his new hat to his friends (a small flock of sheep) that the hat gets snagged on a branch. We see it happen before Douglas is even aware, and watch, waiting for his reaction. When Douglas sees the pile of wool his hat has become he starts to worry. What will his Dad say? What can he do?

The sheep come up with a suggestion, but it's no good. So then they consult with cow, and swoopy bird and finally rabbit who, after trying to snaffle the wool for himself suggests to Douglas Why don't you just tell your dad what happened? He's nice, your dad, he'll understand. Douglas heads back home and sadly tells his parents what happened. As you'd expect, everything is fine. His Dad tells him not to worry and ends up giving him his woolly hat, to grow into.

I really love the premise of this story. Little children often get nervous when something bad happens and are fearful of how their parents will react. My mum tells me that she always knew when I'd been naughty as the house would go very quiet and then she'd hear patter, patter, patter as I ran away to hide somewhere! My own daughter always tries to blame everyone except herself for what's happened, worried that I will get cross with her. This, then, is the perfect story to demonstrate that children need not be afraid if they have an accident or break something. Their parents will always love them, especially if they quickly own up to what's happened.

The illustrations are funny and cartoon-ish, as is Melling's usual style. I find Douglas to be very charming, and the sheep he is friends with are very sweet too. I thought that rabbit lacked a little expression on his face, but then he has a fabulous carroty umbrella to make up for it. We liked looking at what the sheep are getting up to on each page, and the scene towards the end of Mum and Dad bear having tea always makes us hungry.

The best page, in my four year old's opinion, is after the story has ended, and it shows the sheep all wearing a variety of different hats - everything from a banana hat, a wig hat through to the giggle-inducing potty hat and the I don't like peas hat! We've spent a lot of time looking at that last page! The whole book works very well, being both funny and silly and yet, also, charming and relevant to small children. Definitely recommended.

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

Further reading suggestion: If you enjoy this you also might like to read about Douglas' quest to find a hug.

Buy Don't Worry Douglas by David Melling at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Don't Worry Douglas by David Melling at

Buy Don't Worry Douglas by David Melling at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Don't Worry Douglas by David Melling at


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