Friday, 17 August 2012

The Giant Jam Sandwich by John Vernon Lord and Janet Burroway (Red Fox Picture Books)

Normally you don't see four million wasps all in one place (unless you visit Legoland!) but imagine if your peaceful tranquil little village was invaded by them. What would you do?
The villagers of Itching Down come up with a fantastic plan to rid themselves of the yellow striped flying pests. A giant jam sandwich!

This book was one of my favourites as a child and I couldn't believe Abingdon Library had a copy that was still intact and still the original 1972 edition rather than the reprint you see in the picture above (though at least the Red Fox reprint has that fantastic image of the villagers sawing up the giant loaf of bread on the cover).

It features that ace retro 70s line-and-wash art that seemed to be common to a lot of classic children's books, but even despite this, it's a timeless book that Charlotte found as brilliantly entertaining as I had as a ragged-trousered little scamp (also, spookily enough, aged 4 at the time this came out originally, yep do the maths, I'm that old!)

The appeal is the crazy mix of invention, ingenuity and downright eccentricity that comes from the idea of using a giant jam sandwich to rid a village of its flying pest problem.

Charlotte's best bit: The flying tractor. Yes, a flying tractor.

Daddy's favourite bit: The 70s scratchy washy artwork and such a massive nostalgia hit from seeing this again.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars