You Can Do It, Bert! by Ole Konnecke

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You Can Do It, Bert! by Ole Konnecke

Category: For Sharing
Rating: 4.5/5
Reviewer: Ruth Ng
Reviewed by Ruth Ng
Summary: Wonderfully simple, very engaging and we've read it over and over again!
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: September 2014
Publisher: Gecko Press
ISBN: 9781927271032

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It's very rare that I get my hands on a Gecko Press picture book and find I don't like it. They seem to publish lots of unusual, entertaining books that become firm favourites on our bookshelves. This one is no exception. Bert is a plump little birdie, standing on a branch, facing his big day. Can he? Will he? Should he jump?

I love the simplicity of this story. Almost all of the action takes place on a branch of a tree with just our Bert to look at. He's remarkably expressive for a simply drawn bird, and we watch him go from nervousness to indifference to determination, all without being told what he's feeling but merely seeing it expressed on the page. Each page has no more than a couple of sentences, usually very simply written. My two year old has the patience of a flea when it comes to stories at the moment, but even he let me read all the words to this one without trying to turn the pages in between!

The story itself is of Bert being brave enough to take the jump off the branch, although the reason he is jumping may not be quite what you think. I like the simple writing that acts as a sort of narration of Bert's actions, encouraging him along, and asking what he's getting up to when it looks like he's giving up! My favourite page is the one where Bert has finally jumped and we see him, on a double page spread, falling through the air and there is just one word written above his head - help!

The artwork is minimalist, with lots of blank sky and the odd stylised cloud. Bert, as I said, is rather plump and terribly endearing. It's hard to guess at what kind of bird he might be, but he has a very long beak and very short legs, and we love him! The book easily stands up to being re-read over and over. It's that kind of story, and it's so short it isn't a trial to flick back to the beginning as soon as it's ended. I like the encouraging, keep on trying attitude it depicts, and my little boy just likes shouting 'you can do it, Bert!'

Other Gecko Press books that we have read and loved are The Fishing Trip by Beatrice Rodriguez and A Mammoth in the Fridge by Michael Escoffier and Matthieu Maudet

Buy You Can Do It, Bert! by Ole Konnecke at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy You Can Do It, Bert! by Ole Konnecke at

Buy You Can Do It, Bert! by Ole Konnecke at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy You Can Do It, Bert! by Ole Konnecke at


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