Sunday 17 July 2022

One Book Was All It Took

One Book Was All It Took by Wenda Shurety and Amy Calautti (EK Books) HB RRP $24.99 ISBN 9781922539137

Reviewed by Kathleen Grace

One girl's actions lead to chaotic consequences in One Book Was All it Took, a book about the importance of libraries. On a rainy day, Violet has searched her bedroom high and low, but just can’t find a book she hasn’t already read. She wishes her town had a library; a magical place full of adventure where she would never run out of stories to discover. As any proactive child would do, she writes a letter to the mayor asking for a library ‘with heaps of children’s books.’ Meanwhile she searches her house for books but all she can find are Dad’s not-at-all exciting cookbooks. However, supporting the wonky dinner table she finds a book she hasn’t read…

As the illustrations show, one book is all it takes – to upset the table and cover Dad with food. At the bus stop, Sally asks Dad if he knows any unusual cake recipes. Unfortunately, the super smelly cheese in the cake forces Sally to dispose of it. From then on, matters escalate. Connor the clerk skids and drops letters over the balcony rail. One of the letters lands at the foot of the mayor who sees – and reads – Violet’s letter. As a result, the following summer Violet ‘skipped into a brand-new library’. There, one book caught her eye.

An illustration shows Violet holding a huge pile of books… with the final words, ‘one book caught her eye.’ The book on the top of the pile is the book Violet wants. Perhaps in taking it she will put into motion another series of mishaps. It is not entirely clear to this adult reviewer, so perhaps a child reader might not understand, either.

The illustrations in this brightly coloured book are cartoon-like and sure to be enjoyed by young readers aged 4 to 8 years.

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