Thursday, 3 December 2015

Bamboozled

Bamboozled written and illustrated by David Legge (Scholastic Press)
PB RRP $15.99
ISBN 978-1-74362-021-2

Reviewed by Jenny Heslop

A young girl goes to spend the day with her grandfather. But there is something niggling her. She knows something is not quite right but she cannot work out what it is. It is not until she is leaving at the end of the day that she works it out. Then, she and her grandfather have a good laugh.

This is a very clever book where the words and illustrations are in delightful contrast to each other. The text of the story is a simple one describing a very ordinary day. The pictures, however, are a riot of puns and silliness.

We worked in the garden and I planted bulbs in the flower bed. I pushed the wheelbarrow while Grandad pruned the roses. And still, something seemed strange. It niggled and niggled at the back of my mind.

In the picture, a little girl is planting light bulbs into a brass bed. Grandfather is in the wheelbarrow pruning the roses and everything else in the garden is madness. There is a duck in the pond in a floating ring. One of the fountains is a statue with water coming out of her ear, while the other is a topiary teapot pouring water into an overflowing teacup. A tortoise is wearing a cap over his shell and the sun umbrella is a toadstool with matching spotty chairs.

Each picture is amazing. With so much craziness to spot, the book could be read countless times and there would still be something new to find with every turn of the page.

Originally published in 1994, this is a 21st anniversary special edition. In the back is a note from the author/illustrator and an interesting ‘process’ page which shows some of the ideas development.

This highly imaginative picture book will appeal to a range of ages. Try a page, you will be Bamboozled!


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