The Thing by Simon Puttock and Daniel Egneus
|The Thing by Simon Puttock and Daniel Egneus|
|Category: For Sharing|
|Reviewer: Anne Thompson|
|Summary: A picture book with a timeless quality about how friendships are made. This is a thoughtful and gently understated story that makes you wonder and question.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 32||Date: June 2017|
|External links: Author's website|
One day the Thing falls from the sky and four strangers stumble across it. At first they are confused. What is the Thing? What does it do? What is it for? Then the four of them decide to work together to look after and care for the Thing. Soon word spreads about the Thing and others come from far and wide to find out more. Gradually a media circus builds up around the Thing. Throughout all of this the Thing remains silent. Then just as suddenly and silently as it arrived the Thing departs.
This, I think, is a rather special picture book. Charmingly understated and gentle it still has the power to make you think. The response to the arrival of the Thing has comparisons in our society. The four strangers who initially find it are kind and thoughtful and yet others are suspicious and even aggressive in their response. The commercialisation of the event with funfairs, crowds, cameras and media coverage has obvious parallels too. We are never told what the Thing is and the open-ended nature of the story adds to its appeal. The wonderful pastel illustrations by Daniel Egnéus work beautifully with the text and the whole book has a timeless quality.
This is a delightful book to share with very young children as its kind, thoughtful and gentle story is quite comforting. However it would work well across quite a wide age group as its themes would prompt discussions on a variety of subjects. This would be a valuable addition to the school library or classroom. Personally I like the quietness of both the book and the thing. In a world where noise and self-promotion has gradually become more common the impact of the silent Thing and the thoughtful quietness of the strangers who become friends is rather lovely. Over the last few days I have found myself returning to this book for another look and each time I like it a little more. Definitely a book to savour rather than rush through.
Thank you to the publishers for providing this copy for review.
Another lovely picture book about making friends is Just Right for Two by Tracey Corderoy and Rosalind Beardshaw If you are looking for a story about not always judging by appearances I would suggest Mr Big by Ed Vere.
You can read more book reviews or buy The Thing by Simon Puttock and Daniel Egneus at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy The Thing by Simon Puttock and Daniel Egneus at Amazon.com.
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