Tuesday 28 September 2010


Heads by Matthew Van Fleet (Simon and Schuster)

HB RRP $24.99
ISBN 978-144240379-6
Reviewed by Peta Biggin

From sharp-toothed alligators to floppy-eared goats, dusty foxes and slurping pigs, Heads will take the youngest readers on a journey through the wonderful, sometimes messy world of animal heads.

This latest book from the creator of the New York Times bestseller Dog has interactive elements on every page: textured sections, pull and push tabs and pop-ups. Even the front cover has a push tab.

Each new page is packed with colourful illustrations and contains a rhyme focusing on a different part of the head.

Bite mouth, Shout mouth, Slobber mouth,
Nibble mouth, Chew mouth, Rude mouths,

What also impressed me was the number of different animals used throughout the book. There were the usual suspects – elephants, giraffes, rabbits – mixed in with animals not often seen in children’s books – axolotl, cabybara, cotton-top tamarin.

While the book itself is quite robust there are some movable parts that could be torn off the pages by an enthusiastic reader. It is something that parents should keep in mind, lest they find their little one chewing on an elephant’s head!

There is a lot to love about Heads and it would make a terrific edition to any youngster’s library.

Matthew Van Fleet has published several books for pre-school aged readers including: Dog, Cat, Tails and Alphabet. He lives with his family in upstate New York.

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