The Penguin Who Wanted To Find Out by Jill Tomlinson and Paul Howard

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The Penguin Who Wanted To Find Out by Jill Tomlinson and Paul Howard

Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Keith Dudhnath
Reviewed by Keith Dudhnath
Summary: Otto the penguin tries to make sense of his life in the Antarctic. He's a sweet and inquisitive thing, who wants to understand everything as he grows up. An utterly gorgeous tale. Highly recommended. Paul Howard was kind enough to be interviewed by Bookbag.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: September 2009
Publisher: Egmont
ISBN: 978-1405230414

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Otto the penguin lives on his father's feet at the bottom of the world. He's an inquisitive little thing and wants to know why they haven't fallen off the world. His dad explains that they won't Because I say so. Otto and his friend Leo gradually expand their horizons from their fathers' feet - they meet other penguin chicks, get to know their aunts who watch them when their fathers are away, and eventually grow feathers so they're big enough to toboggan on their bellies and swim in the sea.

What an utterly gorgeous book! I completely fell in love with Otto and his quest to make sense of his world. He's got that sweet sense of late toddlers, early pre-schoolers, who ask a million and one questions, are growing into their personalities and just make your heart sing every time you talk to them. When Otto says I have an asking sort of feeling in my tummy. What is it? you immediately think of every young child who's asked a question in a slightly off-kilter way. There are obvious parallels between a young penguin and a young child, but this isn't a cheesy anthropomorphic book - Otto's knowledge, desires, worldview, are all strongly penguin-related. It makes the story all the more real, all the more charming and all the more enjoyable.

Paul Howard's illustrations marry perfectly with Jill Tomlinson's words. There's a realistic air to them, but with the necessary level of cuteness for the little chicks. There are beautiful Antarctic landscapes to pore and shiver over. I particularly loved the picture of all the penguins huddled together in the blizzard. And who doesn't love penguins anyway?

The story is deeper and longer than most picture books, making this perfect for any child on the cusp of reading for themselves, even for very newly confident readers. It's such a warm-hearted and sweet tale that littler ones will be totally enchanted when you read it to them. Read it with other adults in the room and I bet they'll look up from what they're doing and be hooked by the story too. Highly recommended.

My thanks to the publishers for sending it to Bookbag.

Where Is Home, Little Pip? by Karma Wilson and Jane Chapman is another tale of a young penguin, with outstanding illustrations from Jane Chapman. You'd be hard-pushed to choose between it and The Penguine Who Wanted To Find Out, so just get them both! Little Bear's Little Boat by Eve Bunting is all about growing up, and is wonderfully sweet too.

Bookinterviews.jpg Paul Howard was kind enough to be interviewed by Bookbag.

Buy The Penguin Who Wanted To Find Out by Jill Tomlinson and Paul Howard at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Penguin Who Wanted To Find Out by Jill Tomlinson and Paul Howard at Amazon.co.uk.


Buy The Penguin Who Wanted To Find Out by Jill Tomlinson and Paul Howard at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy The Penguin Who Wanted To Find Out by Jill Tomlinson and Paul Howard at Amazon.co.uk.


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