Ernest by Catherine Rayner

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Ernest by Catherine Rayner

Category: For Sharing
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: Ernest the moose is so big that he won't fit into his own book. Luckily he has a resourceful friend to help him out. Highly recommended.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 24 Date: September 2009
Publisher: Macmillan's Children's Books
ISBN: 978-0230529199

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Ernest is a moose and being a moose he's rather large. In fact, he's so large that he can't fit into his own book. When his legs are in the picture you can't see anything else but his head – and that's only if he bends down.

He struggles to shimmy, shuffle and shunt in forwards.

That's no good either. Even with his friend the chipmunk directing operations that's not going to be the way to get all of Ernest onto the page. Plan B is brought into operation.

He tries to squidge, squodge and squeeze in backwards.

This time the chipmunk is taking an active role and he's trying to pull Ernest in, but it's simply not going to work. His middle fits in easily, but there's just no way to get the rest of him onto the page. Ernest is a very disappointed moose. But then his little friend has a big idea. I'm not going to tell you what it is but in a wonderful fold-out surprise at the end of the book we see Ernest standing there in all his glory.

I do love this book – it has it all. Catherine Rayner's illustrations are a delight, with moose in muted tones that make you want to hug him and put everything right. Chipmunk is so tiny in comparison but she's full of life. The text is excellent to read aloud and it's impossible not to smile as Ernest does his best to fit into what is, after all, his own book! There are gentle messages about size and co-operation and lateral thinking, but there's nothing preachy – the emphasis is on having fun. It's a simple idea, perfectly executed and the book comes highly recommended for both boys and girls.

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

If this book appeals we think that you'll also enjoy Penguin by Polly Dunbar and Posy by Linda Newbery and Catherine Rayner.

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