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BOOK REVIEW: Peas and Quiet by Gabrielle Tozer, illustrated by Sue deGennaro

BOOK REVIEW: Peas and Quiet by Gabrielle Tozer, illustrated by Sue deGennaro

Angus & Robertson
June 2017
Hardcover, $24.99
Reviewed by Steph O’Connell

Picture Books

7/10

Best friends Pip and Pop live in a peapod, but sometimes it can get a little too cosy – especially because they are so different!

Pip loves to sing, while Pop won’t stop snoring. How are they ever going to work out how to live together?

From award-winning young adult author Gabrielle Tozer and illustrator Sue deGennaro comes the perfect book about friendship and learning how to get along.

 

Readers of other books illustrated by deGennaro are bound to spot a certain familiarity, with a lot of warm and vibrant blues and greens, and this book is immediately appealing to children in the target age group.

The story itself is told through cute little rhymes, though these can at times be a little tongue-twisting.

Pop snores while she whisks,
Pip cooks while he dreams,
while their dear little pod nearly
splits at the seams.

The above example trips me up every time I read this book, perhaps due to the similarity of their names and that Pip is usually followed by female identifiers and Pop by male identifiers. Stumbling blocks aside, the book does have a nice rhythm to it.

People choosing whether or not to read this book to children whose parents have recently split up should be aware that the peas fight and one of the peas walks out, but comes back near the end of the story.

The leaving could be triggering, but the coming back could also convince kids their parents will get back together when they might not. This could upset young children and also set up for unrealistic expectations, so you should understand the circumstances around a child’s home life before choosing this one. The peas are portrayed as friends, not as though in a romantic relationship, but kids going through this are likely to be sensitive and see it as such, especially as the peas live together.

This potential trigger aside, it’s a cute story about difference and compromise, and is a good way to open discuss friendship and sharing with young children.

 

BOOK REVIEW: Peas and Quiet by Gabrielle Tozer, illustrated by Sue deGennaro

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