Tuesday 5 March 2024

The Most Amazing Thing by Ian Hayward Robinson (Allen and Unwin), RRP $19.99 Picture Book ISBN 9-781761-180118

Reviewed by Susan Hancy

Henry is bored and everyone in his family is too busy for him. When he tries to get Mum’s attention, she has a fabulous suggestion for him: draw a picture of the most amazing thing. That’s before she promptly shuts the door to her study with a “do not disturb” sign. 


Henry can’t imagine what the most amazing thing could be, but in trying to find it – depicted in the superb illustrations by Matt Shanks that add extra layers to the story – Henry’s imagination runs wild. Some of the pictures had my kids laughing out loud and others included intriguing details that prompted a myriad of suggestions from them for what the most amazing thing was going to be. 


The narrative nicely links possibilities of what the most amazing thing could be to the various hobbies of Dad, big sister and big brother and gets the reader thinking: is it life, the human mind or the universe? The answer is none of these. It’s something even more marvellous!


My only disappointment from this otherwise gem of a book is that Mum tells Henry the answer instead of him realising it for himself. 

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