'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Friday 1 July 2011

Review: 3 Wishes for Pugman

Eternally loving the books Wilkins Farago are stacking onto the book shelves of our nation - and I was very excited to see this new release by German author Meschenmoser.

Pugman is having a bad day. There's nothing for breakfast. No coffee in his mug. It's raining and his newspaper gets wet. It's just a bad day all round.

When suddenly, a fairy appears! She will grant Pugman three wishes to make him all wonderfully happy again. A fairytale castle, perhaps? A shiny red sportscar? A swimming pool?

Pugman can have any three wishes he chooses - what a grand opportunity for old Pug!

And what does Pugman choose?

I won't spoil it for you, but suffice to say, it's wonderfully warm and funny. And best of all - it made me instantly go back for a second reading (something I don't do often enough).

At first I wasn't completely convinced by the illustrations in this book. For me, they are just a little too close to the 'amateur' border (and not even in that 'deliberately amateur' way). But I must admit, they grew on me as the story progressed.

I love how the author has been brave enough to feature some completely textless pages. It really works and isn't done nearly often enough in picture books. There's nothing worse than a picture book that needs to explain, through text, what is clearly apparent on a visual level.

I was surprised, then, that the ending of this book didn't stop on the second-last page (its hilarious climax). Surprisingly, this somewhat irreverant author added a final 'last page' to the story that really takes away from the impact of the second-to-last. The book just didn't need that final 'wrap-up-the-story-now' page. But that's just my opinion.

This small thing (which could have been an editing issue) doesn't, however, take the fairytale shine off 3 Wishes for Pugman. This is certainly a book for your book-lover collection. And oh - okaaay... for the kids, too.

Title: 3 Wishes for Pugman
Author/Illustrator: Sebastian Meschenmoser
Publisher: Wilkins Farago, $24.99 RRP
Publication Date: 1 July 2011
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9780980607093
For ages: 3 - 8
Type: Picture book

Teacher's Notes

You can buy this book online