10 Silly Children

Publisher: Pavilion

The author of this book would like you to be sensible and not open its fold-out pages, unless you’re ready for silly behaviour of the highest order. Still, who could resist having just a peek?

Unfortunately, as soon as we start to open out the big fold-out pages, we find chaotic mud baths, frogspawn on toast, giant kid-eating plants and a number of wild animals, including some crocodiles who really need their teeth cleaned! These are not sensible children at all!

Lander’s illustration is reminiscent of the joyous looseness of Tony Ross and Quentin Blake, and this simple book has the same classic feel as one of their picture books. It’s a brilliant idea to start a book by telling readers NOT to do something, when of course we know that’s the first thing they're going to do – and when the book has been set up precisely to reveal the raucous activities of the silly children inside the flaps, as opposed to the sensible ones on the outside.

This is a picture book as opposed to a board book, and in a way it could be considered a counting book, but its illustration style and its sense of humour (rather similar to John Bond’s I Say Oooh, You Say Aaah) ages it up: rather than a counting book per se, it’s for kids who can appreciate the faux-serious tone of the narrator and aren’t as likely to immediately rip the paper-fold pages.

A really original book that delights in the fun that can be had when we’re really, really silly.

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