Sunday 19 September 2021

Hello World

Hello World by Lisa Shanahan, illustrated by Leila Rudge (HarperCollins) HB RRP $19.99 ISBN 9780733340826

Reviewed by Nikki M Heath

Join a toddler as she greets a new day and all the wondrous people, places, and phenomena in her world. A simple rhyming text takes us through the day, focusing on the mundane and the abstract in turn, from a hat and a hose to beloved family members and the changing weather.

From hanging clothes to picking up siblings and sharing a game of hide and seek, the joy of the day-to-day is brought to life. The pencil and watercolour illustrations are colourful but gentle, and the family members each have an impressively well-developed sense of character. That sense of unique personality perhaps doesn’t come through as strongly with the central little girl, who is shown doing all the typical toddler things like banging on pots and pans, dressing up and playing in the garden.

A multiracial household lends a sprinkle of diversity to what is otherwise a stereotypical Aussie suburban setting, one that many little people will be able to relate to in the context of their own day. This is the type of book that under-3s ask for again and again and will bring a warm ray of sunshine to any bedtime routine.

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