Free- Range Freddy


Free- Range Freddy is unlike any other chick every seen in the farmyard. Not only are his legs a little short, his wattle a little wibbly- wobbly, but his voice is a ‘feisty, high-pitched shriek‘! Could this multi-coloured, cartwheeling, crazy-shaped hen ever hope to fit in?

Is there a chance that Freddy’s wildness and difference might offer a little sunshine to the coop? Could it be it ‘just‘ might turn into ‘chuckles’ and then ‘smiles‘? Then again, maybe Freddy could make the coop ‘happy through and through’?

Free- Range Freddy is a shout out to individuality, difference, singing your own song and being loved and appreciated for who you are. Isn’t it possible that a Freddy might bring out ‘the very best thing’ in others?

Rachel Bright’s wild and wonderful rhyming text is matched perfectly by the exuberance and humour of Izzy Evans’ pictures. Free- Range Freddy is a superb, cart-wheeling galumph of feathered fun and friendship.

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Free- Range Freddy

Rachel Bright & Izzy Evans


After Peggy lays a little ‘eggy’ in the chicken coop, she warms ‘it every day inside a straw-made beddy‘. While the other hens about Peggy ‘cluck and squawk/ Every day and every night the same old chicken talk‘ Peggy’s egg begin to hatch. It seems that the other hens predict the emergence of ‘a finely feathered queen or handsome cockerel queen’. Nobody expects Free-Range Freddy!
What’s more this chicken has bulbous eyes, fluffy feathers, alongside a wibble- wobbling wattle and short legs! Furthermore he shrieks! It’s obvious that this chick will not ‘fit in’!  With his ‘flopples’, crazy shapes, scrapes and cartwheels, the other hens become grumpy.
Yet somehow, the longer that Freddy ‘doodle does his thing‘, the more the chickens begin to feel the sunshine and happiness he brings. What’s more their ‘tutting’ becomes chuckles and he ‘uncoops‘ their ‘own music through and through‘.
Rachel Bright’s joyous rhyming text is wonderful, while the colours and extravaganza of Izzy Evans’ pictures bring such delight. There is such a clamour of parties and cheerfulness, reminiscent of The Wonky Donkey amongst other beloved picture books! Yet there is also the joy of the message which reminds us to include and take up the opportunity of expanding our horizons. We see this in other picture books with similar themes, such as Lunch at 10 Pomegranate Street and Big Bob, Little Bob. Thereafter, the exuberance of this picture book cannot help make us laugh, rather like Freddy’s chicken company!
Bookwagon loves this picture book and recommends it to your readers, too. Welcome to the world of Rachel Bright



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