Elephant in My Kitchen!


What is to be done? There’s an Elephant in My Kitchen! What’s more there’s a ‘rhino reading stories while bouncing on my bed’! Then, there’s ‘a penguin ‘pecking popcorn,/ A wolf- wolfing cake’– why it’s all getting too much! So, why is Rafi’s home being overwhelmed by animals! When they squash his Pink Rabbit, he’s had enough!

It seems like the animals have nowhere to go! Their trees have been chopped down, while their ice floes and food sources have ebbed away. So, what can Rafi do? After all, ‘Tigers live in forests/ And NOT on our settee.’ It seems like we could make ‘their homes cosy, safe and strong’, and make sure that we acknowledge that ‘Our world belongs to everyone’.

At the conclusion of this positive, empowering picture book, Rafi shares his Big Plan. Can we take on board his suggestions? Smriti Halls and Ella Okstad do not lecture but lay out the situation clearly, warmly and with humour. Elephant in My Kitchen! is a joy to read, acknowledge, act upon and share.


Elephant in My Kitchen!

Smriti Halls and Ella Okstad


Can you believe it? An Elephant in My Kitchen! ? What’s more, there’s a gorilla in the bedroom, pulling out the toys and a panda playing badminton, and an orang-utan brushing with toothpaste in his ear!
Where have all these animals arrived from? They’re filling up every room in the house! Then again, it seems like they’re eating all the food, from ice cream, popcorn, cake and banana0 chocolate shakes!
It seems as though all these animals are displaced because they’ve nowhere to live. For example there’s ‘hardly any fish to eat,/ And hardly any ice.‘ Then, ‘the trees keep getting chopped away/ There’s RUBBISH in their bed.‘ So, what choice is there?
Ella Okstad, illustrator of Sophie Johnson Detective Genius amongst other titles, offers bright, urgent pictures that highlight the drama. Meanwhile Smriti Halls’ rhyming text is imaginative, funny and exciting. What will happen? What do we have to do with this situation? For, while the message is there, we are drawn in through a vibrantly wild situation, rather like Lily and the Polar Bears. Therefore, it is impactful and understood. Elephant in My Kitchen! is an engrossing, necessary picture book.


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