Sunday, 10 April 2011

Wanda and the Alien by Sue Hendra (Children's, Picture book, 10E/10E)

28th April 2011, Red Fox 
32 pages, Paperback 
Review copy 

Children's, Picture Book

Friendship, being different, playing, childhood experiences, ignorance, humour 

Blurb from the book (it hasn't quite been uploaded on the RHCB website yet) 
What would you do if you found an alien? 
Would you run screaming or try and scare him away? 
Or would you show him all the best things to do? 
In this lovely story about accepting differences and sharing, Wanda and the alien become best friends. 
But where are all Wanda's friends? 
Can you find them? They can't have gone far! 

Nayuleska's thoughts
I love this book! Some books I adore, and this is one of them. I think it's a mixture of the story and the illustrations. The story is really appropriate, because this alien lands and Wanda who is a sweet girl bunny (already I love it by having a bunny as the main character) takes him under her wing. The alien isn't afraid of Wanda. He joins in all the fun as she helps him out, and shows him where she plays. 

It's all a bit weird when she can't find her friends, but it turns out they are hiding because the alien is different. But thanks to Wanda at the end they realise the alien is quite safe. I think this is really important, because if people look different, sometimes children are wary of them or tease them. But everyone is human, and we're all essentially the same. Sure there are some things that we may have to do differently, or like the alien we may look different than normal, but we're all human. 

Now on to the illustrations. I love the style with the bright, bold colours. I like how the expressions really suit the story at the point - especially when Wanda and the alien get dizzy from rolling down a hill - there are little swirly lines around their heads which gives me a sense of movement. 

Final conclusion 
In our modern world full of multi-culturism and equality, this is a wonderful book for helping children to understand that if someone is a bit different, they aren't scary. They are actually good fun.

Suggested reading
Princess Poppy: Playground Princess by Janey Louise Jones, Children's, Paperback, all about friendship and how girls can be cruel if they don't like someone, but good friends stick with each other no matter what. 

Monster Baby by Lee Car, Children's, Picture Book, The colours of the illustrations are similar to Wanda and the Alien, and there are lots of funny moments. 

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