Monday, May 19, 2014

The Lazy Friend by Ronan Badel (Gecko Press)


The Lazy Friend

Written and Illustrated by
Ronan Badel

Published by Gecko Press

Wordless picture books sometimes lead me into a real performance whenever we receive one and start to 'read' through it. Ronan Badel's "The Lazy Friend" features the animal du jour, everyone's current favourite jungle layabout The Sloth. Sloths are actually pretty fascinating characters (anyone who tries to spot the sloths that live in the hothouse at Cotswold Wildlife Park had better be observant). So they're a brilliant subject for a knockabout tale such as this.

Sloth is asleep (quelle surprise!) while his friends play cards. Seemingly nothing can wake Sloth from his slumber, which causes problems when a logging company move in on his habitat and hack down the tree that sloth has attached himself to.

A rather brave snake attempts to rescue sloth and ends up caught up in a manic and exciting chase, a precarious journey on the back of a truck and a hilarious escapade on the river (watch out for those crocodiles!)

Poor snake is frazzled, but is sloth OK? We'll leave you to pick up this fabulous book and find out the answer for yourself (the end of the book is very funny indeed!).

As mentioned, we turn wordless picture books into a performance so Charlotte and I read through the book together, describing each scene and making up daft dialogue for the creatures in this tale (I got the easy part, all I had to do for sloth was snore loudly!)

Wordless picture books are extremely important for children who aren't confident readers, but want to join in with telling a story. Based purely on the lovely visuals in this, they'll have no trouble at all having fun and describing each scene just as we did.

"The Lazy Friend" by Ronan Badel is out on June 1st from Gecko Press.

Charlotte's best bit: Snake is extremely good at hiding from the nasty logger!

Daddy's Favourite bit: A lovely example of a wordless tale that has a ton of atmosphere, engagement and above all, loads of fun!

(Very kindly sent to us for review by Gecko Press)

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