Monday 17 July 2023

Business Chickens

Business Chickens by Jess McGeachin (Penguin), RRP $24.99, Hardcover Picture Book, ISBN 9-780143-779179

Reviewed by Susan Hancy

Fran the chicken is unlike all other business chickens. She does not dress conventionally. She is not punctual. She is not neat. And she certainly can’t sit studiously behind a computer working through a pile of paperwork, especially if there is an opportunity to prank her colleagues. But Fran’s boss is displeased with her, and she promises him she’ll try harder. She dresses like everyone else. She arrives on time. She keeps her desk tidy for a while. She even tries to get through all the paperwork, working late into the night alone in the office.

This, however, doesn’t make Fran happy and her boss is still not satisfied. Fran is “laid off” (spot the chicken pun) with the clear message that she is not a good business chicken.

The illustrations perfectly complement the text to convey the contrast between Fran’s creative, flamboyant character and the monotony and uniformity of office work life. Some cupcakes depicted in a couple of illustrations in the first part of the story provide the visual clue to the venture Fran decides to embark upon after being fired and, despite not being suitable for an office job, she discovers that she is an excellent business chicken.

My kids loved the story and the illustrations. They especially loved the concept that you can do something fun and creative for your job and be successful. We all agreed that we want to be like Fran. This is another crackerjack book for kids aged 4--7 by author-illustrator Jess McGeachin and we think it’s his best since Frankie and the Fossil, a CBCA Picture Book of the Year Notable last year.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Buzz Words Books would love to hear what you think.