Nibbles: The Dinosaur Guide by Emma Yarlett

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Nibbles: The Dinosaur Guide by Emma Yarlett

Category: Emerging Readers
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Sam Tyler
Reviewed by Sam Tyler
Summary: Nibbles is back and this time he has a taste for facts in this interactive book that looks lovely, but can't quite capture the same magic as the first outing from everyone's favourite book monster.
Buy? Maybe Borrow? Yes
Pages: 36 Date: September 2017
Publisher: Little Tiger Press
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 9781848696914

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Some of you may already be aware of Nibbles. He is a little monster that likes to nibble everything. Nibbles nibbles socks, Nibbles nibbles clocks, but the thing that Nibbles likes to nibble most is books! Therefore, putting him in a book is not the safest place as he will try and eat his way out. Whilst the first book saw the tyke getting into trouble in fairy tales, this time it is non-fiction that has whetted his appetite and in particular a book all about dinosaurs.

Nibbles has escaped once more, but instead of devouring Red Riding Hood and Goldilocks, he is munching his way through the Jurassic era. Although he himself is a monster, Nibbles is only small so when the dinosaurs find out that he is causing trouble they decide to chase him from their book. Can Nibbles escape the Land of the Dinosaurs before being stomped on?

There are few books that broke the 4th wall better than the original Nibbles: The Book Monster. Here was a character who could hop in and out of famous stories by eating his way around. This meant that the layout of the book was a triumph – glorious hardback with mini books contained within. There are hours of fun just to be had peering through the various holes in the book that Nibbles made. More of the same would have been great, but with The Dinosaur Guide it is a case of more of the similar, showing that changing something small can make a big difference.

The fact that this is non-fiction, rather than fiction means that the book feels quite different. It made a kind of twisted sense that Nibbles would eat fairy tales and disrupting well known stories means that you know what trouble he is causing as his antics alter the original narrative. By consuming non-fiction, this structure is missing. Instead you have a creature venturing forth through a typical encyclopaedia style fact book. When he gets in the way of a dinosaur they pop out of their frames and chase him. It does work, but the fun of disrupting traditional folk tales is far greater than just a chase book filled with angry dinosaurs.

Despite the subject matter not being as keen as the first title, the structure of the book is still a tour de force. This is a wonderful A4 hardback full of flaps that can he looked under. More often than not you will find a big hole behind it that Nibbles has created. In terms of interaction, the fun is still wonderful. You can also learn a little if you read around the holes as there are some genuine Dino facts on offer.

The issue with this title is that the narrative structure is missing by the decision to use non-fiction. In its stead Emma Yarlett has increased the cheek factor. The first book had a little mild naughtiness, but Dinosaur Guide has brought out the crassness. There is more than one reference to dinosaur poo in this book. The original did not need to resort to this humour. I cannot help feeling that one or two more children's-story-based outings would have been nice before tackling dinosaurs. What you have is a very well put together book that lacks the satisfaction of the first. Many children will still enjoy this outing, but it is just not up to muster.

I urge you to check out the original and the best Nibbles adventure Nibbles: The Book Monster.

Buy Nibbles: The Dinosaur Guide by Emma Yarlett at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Nibbles: The Dinosaur Guide by Emma Yarlett at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy Nibbles: The Dinosaur Guide by Emma Yarlett at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Nibbles: The Dinosaur Guide by Emma Yarlett at Amazon.com.


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