What would you do if you found an ‘alligator on [your] radiator’ or even ‘llamas in [your] pyjamas’? How would it be if you found ‘an armadillo on [your] pillow‘ or ‘a polar bear on [your] chair‘? What’s more, if you’re like Mrs Golightly and don’t like animals, you’d find it appalling! It’s likely you’d shout Shoo! just as she does.

Yet will it work? Or might you find ‘bugs in the rugs’ and ‘a giraffe in [your] bath’? Could it be you’ll find ‘a kangaroo on [your] loo’ and then ‘an armadillo on [your] pillow’. What can be done? Does it call for bars on windows and ‘locks and bolts’ on the doors and then signs on the gate? Could it be that at that point the message might be clear? Yet if the animals from the zoo next door vacate your property, won’t you love the peace and quiet, or might you….

With fabulous rhyming text of such ridiculous notions, an exaggerated character in Mrs Golightly and then outrageously behaving animals, Shoo! is a delight! It begs to be read aloud, shared and participated with, gifted and treasured. Bookwagon loves this picture book!

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Susie Bower and Francesca Gambatesa

(Pushkin Children’s)

Mrs Golightly considers animals ‘noisy, stinky, bothersome creatures‘. Thereafter, Shoo! she cries. However, she is destined to be very close to animals when a Zoo moves in next door. What’s more, it seems that these animals  dance ‘round her garden’. Wouldn’t this put her in a ‘very bad mood’?
Thereafter, Mrs Golightly finds ‘a kangaroo on her loo‘ and then a ‘giraffe in her bath’. There is not way that Mrs Golightly will stand for this! She tells them clearly, ‘I don’t like you! Go back to the zoo!’
Yet what of the ‘alligator on her radiator’ or the ‘pair of llamas in her pyjamas’? Then again, what of the ‘armadillo on her pillow’ or the ‘polar bear in her chair’….
Alongside the rhyming assault of animals on Mrs Golightly’s home are onomatopoeic sounds and movements and hugely descriptive, exaggerated and hilarious pictures from Francesca Gambatesa. What’s more, there’s repetition that demands participation! It means we understand Mrs Golightly’s frustration and growing fury. Therefore, what happens when they take the message and all depart? Thereafter, could it be that should she sight them ‘dancing round her garden‘ she’ll raise her voice again and shout Shoo! You’ll just HAVE to find out!


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