I'm Sure I Saw A Dinosaur by Jeanne Willis and Adrian Reynolds

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I'm Sure I Saw A Dinosaur by Jeanne Willis and Adrian Reynolds
Buy I'm Sure I Saw A Dinosaur from Amazon.co.uk

Buy I'm Sure I Saw A Dinosaur from Amazon.com

Genre: For Sharing
Rating: 4/5
Reviewer: Ruth Ng
Reviewed by Ruth Ng
Summary: Lively and fun rhyming tale of a boy who cries wolf (well, dinosaur!) for a reason...
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 32 Date: April 2011
Publisher: Andersen Press
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-1842708545

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When a child in a small seaside town is sure he saw a dinosaur he runs to tell the fisherman. The fisherman tells his mum, who tells the butcher, who tells the baker and so on...Before you know it the whole town are down on the beach, and more and more people are joining them to look for the elusive dinosaur. It seems, for a long time, that the little boy must have imagined it...was there really a dinosaur on the beach?

It turns out, at the end, that the little boy's dad runs an ice-cream shop on the shore and the boy's plan was to get lots of people to come and buy ice creams since business gets quiet in the winter! We a see a long queue outside the shop and then, inside, the little boy is dressed in a dinosaur costume!

Because this book has a good pace to it, and is told in rhyme I decided to try it out at playgroup for story time. I felt it ran a tiny bit too long - there are rather a lot of different people who come to see the dinosaur - but it went down very well, and when we got to the page with the shadowy dinosaur image most of the children shouted out 'it's the dinosaur!' The ice cream ending also proved popular and provoked a prolonged discussion about which flavour everyone likes best.

The illustrations are great, lots of shocked and surprised looking people running hither and thither. The colours are bright and enticing with large, clearly defined faces so it works well to read aloud with a group, and there's plenty going on in each scene so when you're reading one-to-one you can stop and pause over pictures to look at what's happening. My favourite page has a family watching a television announcement about the spotting of the dinosaur - the children are eating ice creams, one with chocolate all around his mouth, and the granddad is fast asleep on the chair snoring next to them!

I suppose lying to create a crowd in order to attract business to an ailing shop is a little, well, dubious, but it makes for a fun story that survives repeated readings!

I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to The Bookbag.

Further reading suggestion: For more dinosaur delights try: Tyrannosaurus Drip by Julia Donaldson.

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