The Best Singer in the World by Ulf Nilsson and Eva Eriksson

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The Best Singer in the World by Ulf Nilsson and Eva Eriksson

Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Ruth Ng
Reviewed by Ruth Ng
Summary: A lovely story about finding the courage to do something scary. Perfect for older pre-school children as well as those in Reception and Key Stage 1 at school.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: April 2012
Publisher: Gecko Press
ISBN: 978-1877579127

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There's a boy who loves to sing to his little brother, and his little brother thinks he's the very best singer in the world. He sings him You are my sunshine and Jingle Bells and a made-up song about farts (well, they are boys!) But when it comes to singing or speaking in front of other people - well, that's a different matter. So when he's asked to say a few words at the end of the school concert he finds himself growing more and more afraid. Will he find the courage to stand on stage and end the show?

This is a lovely story to share, especially with children who perhaps have their own school concerts to deal with and are feeling a little bit nervous. The boy in this story finds himself dressed as a mole, petrified of going on stage to say the final words of the show. He imagines what will happen if he stands there and is unable to speak - the parents might start throwing cakes at him, then the school would be closed down, and his teacher would lose her job, and she'd have to look in the rubbish for bottles to sell for money...!

Our poor little mole has a nightmare about his performance, and he drags his feet on the day of the show. Once on stage he's suddenly bursting for the toilet and rushes off to hide. His little brother comes to find him, telling him he's the best singer in the world, and suddenly buoyed by this he goes up onto the stage, taking his little brother with him. And he not only finds the courage to say the words he's supposed to, he suddenly finds he likes being on stage and he starts to sing some songs, including the song about farts!

It's a brilliant idea for a story. Standing up on stage in front of people can be a daunting task at any age, and this book cleverly shows both the fear beforehand and then the joy and excitement when he manages to face his fears. The story is told well and it's longer than many picture books so would cater well for those who are a bit too old for The Very Hungry Caterpillar Pop-Up Book by Eric Carle and want something a bit more substantial to their bedtime reading.

The illustrations are sweetly drawn, soft pencil pictures and children with happy faces. There's lots of emotion in the pictures too, so you really appreciate how the little boy is feeling throughout. The image of him lying in bed imagining the worst for the day of the show is both funny and moving, and each image captures the essence of the story very well.

Share it with any nervous little performers you may know, or just enjoy it as a good bedtime story!

For dealing with a different kind of nervousness try the brilliant Don't Worry Douglas by David Melling

Buy The Best Singer in the World by Ulf Nilsson and Eva Eriksson at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Best Singer in the World by Ulf Nilsson and Eva Eriksson at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy The Best Singer in the World by Ulf Nilsson and Eva Eriksson at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Best Singer in the World by Ulf Nilsson and Eva Eriksson at Amazon.com.