Friday 19 December 2014

ReadItDaddy's Second Book of the Week - Week Ending 19th December 2014 - "Please Mr Panda" by Steve Antony (Hodder Children's Books)

Please Mr Panda

Written and Illustrated by
Steve Antony

Published by Hodder Children's Books

We couldn't resist sneaking in just one more book of the week before we take a bit of a break over Christmas (but don't worry, articles and reviews will still be popping up between now and January so stay tuned!)

Steve Antony has established himself as a bit of a superstar this year. His second book "The Queen's Hat" rocked our socks off back in April, with a wonderful celebratory mix of crazy chase antics, regal tomfoolery and a lovely touristy whirl around our beloved capital.

It's been really great to see other folk loving the book as much as we have - and they're going to fall in love all over again with Steve's latest book.

Put it this way, we knew we were going to love it from the moment we saw the star's dour and quite serious expression on the front cover of the book. Mr Panda may look slightly grumpy but he's a stickler for good manners. So when Mr Panda decides to offer a huge tray of (quite mouthwateringly delicious) donuts to his friends, you'd expect there to be a bit of a bunfight.

"Manners maketh the man" said my wise old Nan, and she was right - but it seems that none of Mr Panda's friends have ever been taught about good manners and politeness. They're rude, grabby and they're definitely NOT going to be sampling Mr Panda's fare with an attitude like that.

It takes an utterly adorable lemur to show people how it's done. In fact the rather delicious moment when Mr Panda hears a please, and a thank you caused us to cackle with glee - largely due to Steve's utterly fab way with expressions (Mr Panda is a deadpan superstar, we LOVE him!)

We read this again, and again, and again (and as it turned up first thing in the morning we ended up in a mad rush to get to work and school - but hey, some things are worth being late for!)

So Steve effortlessly cruises into our Book of the Week slot once again, this book is an absolute hoot but more importantly it's something of a rarity - there really aren't enough books around that encourage politeness and good manners, and certainly none that deliver their core message in such an utterly brilliant way. Hooray for Steve and Mr Panda!

Charlotte's best bit: Lemur's look of blissed-out sugar-fuelled satisfaction after a ring-donut feast! (She adored the fact that he could thread all the donuts onto his tail and just scoff them at leisure)

Daddy's Favourite bit: Steve is swiftly establishing himself as a children's book superstar, comparisons to Jon Klassen are justified - with the tiniest tweak of his pen he can imbue the characters in this story with huge personality, none less so than Mr Panda himself! Love his deadpan expressions and utterly love each reaction to animal rudeness. Thoroughly well deserved as one of our final book of the week winners of 2014

(Kindly sent to us for review by Hodder Children's Books)