I Dare You by Reece Wykes

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I Dare You by Reece Wykes

Category: For Sharing
Rating: 2.5/5
Reviewer: Sam Tyler
Reviewed by Sam Tyler
Summary: Two apes take part in a game of dare that ends in something that may be a little too shocking to small children, but at least it is well illustrated.
Buy? No Borrow? Maybe
Pages: 32 Date: July 2017
Publisher: Andersen Press
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 9781783445370

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Some children's books require a robust sense of humour from a parent, or at least the ability to look the other way when a book is being naughty. There are more books on pants and poo than could fill a landfill, but when is something too far for a children's book? Bragging? Lying? Cannibalism?

The game of dares is always a dangerous one that I never partook of as a child – it only led to grief, but for two bored gorillas there is not much else to do. This is a game of I dare you to eat … Things start off small and then get larger and larger, until the only thing left to eat is of a meaty texture.

I am not usually one for spoilers in reviews, but one of the final acts of this book determines whether you think this is suitable for your child or not – one of the gorillas ends up eating the other. Perhaps in the right context this would work in a children's books as a daft aside, but this is a book for 3-5 year olds who probably do not quite have that wild sense of the absurd yet. It is not aided by Reece Wykes dry style. The gorillas in the midst of the book are quite arrogant and self-assured. When one beats the other in the ultimate game of I Dare, they don't have a sense of regret on their face, but one of smug victory. I just can't imagine that this is suitable for many children.

Perhaps it was never the intention of Reece for this to be a book that was actually read by children? There are elements that are fantastic; the art design being one. However, this art design looks great because it is so stylised. A parent will appreciate the use of colour and bold lines more than the child.

Primates are meat eater and do sometimes eat other primates, but is that what you want to read before bed? You should heed that little tingle at the back of your head when the book starts – a beetle and bird are soon eaten. This felt a little off to me, but the conclusion is just bizarre for a toddler to understand. The book is meant to be viewed with a detached sense of humour, but how many toddlers have this? There is a nice end which will make the adults chuckle, but they may have to settle down their confused and scared child first. Best to check this book out first before purchase to ensure that your child has a robust enough constitution for it.

Apes and monkeys are everywhere in children's literature and if you after a hungry primate try Monkey's Sandwich by Michelle Robinson and Emily Fox instead.

Buy I Dare You by Reece Wykes at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy I Dare You by Reece Wykes at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy I Dare You by Reece Wykes at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy I Dare You by Reece Wykes at Amazon.com.


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