Good Little Wolf by Nadia Shireen

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Good Little Wolf by Nadia Shireen

Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Keith Dudhnath
Reviewed by Keith Dudhnath
Summary: A cheeky and fun take on big bad wolf fairy tales. Although there's one twist too many, the vibrant text and adorable illustrations make it well-worth a read. Warmly recommended.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: June 2011
Publisher: Jonathan Cape
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-1780080017

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Rolf is a good little wolf. He always eats up his vegetables. He is kind to his friends, including Little Pig and Mrs Boggins - who looks a lot like Little Red Riding Hood's grandma. One day he runs into the Big Bad Wolf, who opens Rolf's eyes to the kind of shenanigans that most wolves get up to. Will Rolf give in to his lupine heritage, or will he stay true to his well-behaved self?

Good Little Wolf is a cheeky and amusing read, with plenty to delight its young audience. It plays on traditional fairy tales, but doesn't require a deep familiarity with them to get the most from it. Rolf is a lovely character, with big eyes, a cheerful expression, and awash with the innocence of youth. It's particularly fun to see him exploring his dark side, as he tries to howl at the moon and blow houses down.

The vocabulary is clear and appropriate, but varied and interesting enough to capture the imagination of the little ones and keep amused the big ones doing the reading. The plot is cleverly paced and has some amusing moments of suspense and misdirection. Come the ending, there's a smart twist which will have the little ones giggling. However, there's another milder twist which bookends the whole thing. This last twist feels like overkill, and takes some of the edge of the much punchier first twist. It doesn't ruin the book, but it is one small criticism of an otherwise excellent picture book.

Nadia Shireen's illustrations are excellent. They perfectly capture the spirit of the book: they're quirkily cute, cutely scary, endlessly funny and with a fresh style of their own. Rolf wouldn't be half such an appealing character with lesser illustrations. I can't wait to see what Nadia Shireen produces next. If it's as fun as Good Little Wolf, we're in for a real treat. Warmly recommended.

My thanks to the publishers for sending it to Bookbag.

For straight-up fairy tales, take a look at Cinderella by Sally Gardner. For twists on fairy tales, take a look at Not Last Night But The Night Before by Colin McNaughton and Emma Chichester-Clark, Me and You by Anthony Browne, The Three Billy Goats Fluff by Rachael Mortimer and Liz Pichon and Instructions by Neil Gaiman.

Buy Good Little Wolf by Nadia Shireen at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Good Little Wolf by Nadia Shireen at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy Good Little Wolf by Nadia Shireen at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Good Little Wolf by Nadia Shireen at Amazon.com.


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