Would You Rather…

Publisher: Red Fox

Review

Would you rather that your house was surrounded by water, snow or jungle? Would you rather be covered in jam, soaked with water or pulled through the mud by a dog? How about being made to eat spider stew, slug dumplings, mashed worms – or drink snail squash? None of these? Perhaps, all things considered, you’d just like to go to sleep in your own bed.

A classic for children, Would You Rather... presents an alternative to a traditional story by imagining a mixture of fantastical and real-life choices. Some things are silly, like yucky food choices – but some are closer to home, like being lost in a shop or your mum having a row in a café, both of which might make children feel embarrassed or worried.

The format of the book and lack of judgement enables readers to talk together about what they’d rather do and why – important in building confidence with little ones about making their own choices for their own reasons. In this way, the book can be read for giggly, silly fun, or as part of a focus on choice and independence. Or both! As ever with John Burningham, the emotional perceptiveness of the book – and the sensitivity to how children think and feel – is aware, kind and thoughtful.

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