Today I’m reviewing a much loved picture book – er, much loved by me and my little daughter. This time it is Kipper’s A to Z.
I could have chosen from any number of the Kipper books but this one is a future classic and perfect for sharing. Mick Inkpen illustrates as well as writes.
Imagine you are a cute brown and white dog with a fondness for old socks and caterpillars, plus the odd bone and zebra. Yours is a world of gentle humour, meandering adventures and loveable friends. In this book Kipper works his way through the alphabet meeting old friends and new surprises.
There are plenty of unexpected objects associated with the letters of the alphabet – though K is obviously for Kipper. Mick Inkpen ties the narrative to the objects and has plenty of fun on the way. The Zebra keeps popping in wanting to know when it will appear and Kipper keeps shushing it until the right cue.
X is a strange one though – named after the insect that Kipper finds earlier in the book. I don’t think this is a book that strives to teach children the letters of the alphabet – rather it seeks to entertain and hopefully give readers a sense that they are on a journey. Objects begin with letters and letters form an alphabet … very simple really.
I originally met up with Kipper books while teaching in a Primary School – Haddon Primary in Nottingham. A very good school with plenty of good books. My absolute favourite one features Kipper and Tiger in the snow, though I have a fondness for the one where Kipper and Tiger play with a rocket.
Anyone reading Kipper’s A to Z will recognise the gentle charm of the narrator. I now hear the voice of Martin Clunes who narrates the Kipper stories on DVD. It is a warm, cheerful, thoughtful voice which blends well with the slowly unfolding onscreen narratives.
Kipper’s A to Z has been out a decade or so now and still has a resonance today. It was crafted to stay well within Kipper’s world so there are no references to any objects that will date. Don’t expect to see X is for X Box.
Mick Inkpen is someone I’d love to meet – he must have a wealth of stories about his…er…stories. Plus he is the creator of another animal favourite – ‘Wibbly Pig’ who shares Kipper’s sense of adventure.
I am sure that Kipper will become a favourite for every new generation of readers. He is much loved in our household and makes us feel closer to our own real life adventurous dog, Skye.
You might like to consider downloading a sample or two of my sunny, funny Wee Bear picture ebooks … (available for KindleFires, Paperwhite, Kindle For Mac & Android).
‘Cuddle Muddle‘ – available on kindle (UK link)
‘Cuddle Muddle‘ – available on kindle (US link)
‘Wiggle Jiggle’ – available on kindle (UK link)
‘Wiggle Jiggle’ – available on kindle (US link)
‘Eggy Leggy’ – available on kindle (UK link)
‘Eggy Leggy’ – available on kindle (US link)