Father Christmas Needs A Wee by Nicholas Allan
|Father Christmas Needs A Wee by Nicholas Allan|
|Genre: For Sharing|
|Reviewer: Keith Dudhnath|
|Summary: A light-hearted counting book based around Father Christmas doing his deliveries, whilst desperate for a wee. We liked the premise, but weren't blown away by the execution. The accompanying CD read by Bernard Cribbins is worth a listen though.|
|Buy? Maybe||Borrow? Maybe|
|Pages: 32||Date: September 2010|
|Publisher: Red Fox|
|External links: Author's website|
Father Christmas is doing his rounds, drinking all the treats that the boys and girls have left out for him. With that much liquid sloshing around inside him, he's soon bursting for a wee, but he then realises that he's forgotten to deliver the presents, so has to rush back again. Will he ever get to the toilet in time?
I like the premise of Father Christmas Needs A Wee - there's a cheeky air to it, and it offers something a little different to the average counting book. The title alone will win over many small fans. I'm less keen on some of the execution though. The rhymes are a somewhat clunky as Father Christmas goes through the house numbers. Also, he has cups of tea at number 3, 4 and 10 - is it really that hard to come up with 10 different drinks? I'm afraid the illustrations didn't do anything for me at all: they're a little basic and other than seeing Santa desperate for the loo, they don't excite or capture the magical warmth of Christmas.
Having Father Christmas count down backwards through the houses was a nice touch. It extends the age range of the book beyond those simply learning numbers, and will lead to a greater familiarity with how numbers work. There are so many 1-10 counting books out there that anything even a little bit different is worth noting.
The highlight of Father Christmas Needs A Wee is the accompanying CD, read by Bernard Cribbins. I'm always a sucker for CD versions of picture books, and although I'm not a massive fan of the source material, it certainly gets a fresh lease of life when listening to it. If the idea of Santa bursting to use the toilet makes you giggle, the CD might make it worth a purchase.
My thanks to the publishers for sending it to Bookbag.
For other CD versions of picture books, check out Bear Flies High by Michael Rosen and Adrian Reynolds, Elmer On Stilts by David McKee, The Selfish Crocodile Book of Nursery Rhymes by Faustin Charles and Michael Terry and Olivia by Ian Falconer. For Christmas books, check out The Happiest Man in the World or the Mouse Who Made Christmas by Mij Kelly and Louise Nisbet, The Bloomsbury Christmas Treasury by Sally Grindley, Bear's First Christmas by Robert Kinerk and Jim LaMarche and Cub's First Winter by Rebecca Elliott. The Newt In The Suit by Andrew Weale and Margaret Chamberlain is a fun counting book.
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