Will You Be My Friend?


Will You Be My Friend? It seems that nobody wants to be Bush Baby’s friend. Not only is she the wrong colour, according to Flamingo, but tails are a turn off for Toad. He tells her she should have a long tongue, instead. What’s more, Giraffe dismisses Bush Baby’s invitation because she’s too small! Then again, Zebra thinks she needs stripes. Should she just  ‘go away and be on [her] own… forever’? 

What if Lion suggests she is ‘very brave or very foolish’ for considering him as a friend. After all, nobody wants Lion’s friendship because they’re certain that he’ll eat them. However, Bush Baby is ‘lonely‘. She has ‘no friends’. What’s more, Lion’s acceptance seems genuine. So, can they be friends? If something gels, is it possible that the other animals might reconsider? Then again, how will Lion feel about that?

Russell Ayto creates stories with a hint of mischief which means they’re ideal to enjoy at bedtime and then to take out and read again. Bookwagon loves, and welcomes Will You Be My Friend? aboard. This is a beautiful picture book, full of jewel colours and patterns, with such intricately detailed illustrations that are exaggerated to emphasise such a winning story!

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Will You Be My Friend?

Russell Ayto

(Andersen Press)

Will You Be My Friend? asks Bush Baby. Could it be Giraffe, or might he decide Bush Baby is ‘much too small’. Thereafter, what of Toad with the ‘very long tongue‘. Surely he could not decline Bush Baby’s invitation because of her tail?
It seems that Zebra thinks that her friends should have stripes. What’s more Snake things Bush Baby is ‘silly‘ for wanting to be friends. After all, Bush Baby has ‘far too many legs-ss‘. Bush Baby is lonely, yet Flamingo dismisses her invitation without even listening to her, ‘Absolutely not!‘ That rejection is all because Bush Baby is not pink!
So how will Bush Baby react if Lion overhears her decide that she’s going to ‘go away and be on [her] own forever’? Might Lion put his best foot forward? Surely Bush Baby could be so ‘brave or – foolish‘ as to accept it? Then again might it be that everyone thinks Lion is not the sort of friend they’d like, either? Therefore, might Lion and Bush Baby be each other’s ‘perfect friend‘? Then, what might the other animals think…. Could they reconsider?
Award-winning writer and illustrator Russell Ayto offers such a wise, warm and witty picture book. Alongside a story that grips us, he offers brilliantly coloured pages, and such cleverly created characters. As with other picture books by this superb creator, such as Mouse in the House, we are completely entranced! We are involved in Bush Baby’s plight, and desperate to step up to play! Bookwagon loves and recommends Will You Be My Friend?


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