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

Friday 22 November 2019

Review: You Can't Invite a Fish to a Dance Party

You can’t invite a fish to a dance party.

They don’t have legs to dance, they can’t sing and it would be way too dangerous.

That’s what Cat, Dog, Parrot and Rabbit think anyway. 

The friends are getting ready for a pet dance party, but they don’t want to invite Fish because they just don’t think Fish can come — for his own safety.

Fish disagrees. Strongly. He’s determined to prove he can sing and dance just like the other pets.

But as he tries to prove himself, the other pets get more and more cautious. They move him away, they take extra precautions to keep his bowl safe, and Fish starts to wonder if maybe they are right. Maybe he shouldn’t come to the dance party.

Can Fish find the courage to be himself and sing and dance like he wants to? Can the other pets see beyond Fish’s fishbowl to the talents he can bring to the party?

You Can’t Invite a Fish to a Dance Party is a story about courage, friendship and learning not to make assumptions about your friend’s abilities. It’s easy to stereotype people, and it’s normal to want to protect a friend, but everyone should have the opportunity to try, and everyone should be included if they want to be.

Jessica Williams explores all these topics in this fun picture book, but I love that she does so subtly, the messages hidden within an entertaining story about a karaoke loving cat and a dog who loves to boogie.

The illustrations by Jimena de la Vega are simply beautiful. Bright and colourful, they bring joy to every page. They bring the characters to life and convey so much emotion.

This is a fantastic picture book for young kids. It will introduce them to the concepts of inclusion and empathy, and it will show them that they have a very special power to make others feel welcome and included, if they choose to use it.

Title: You Can't Invite a Fish to a Dance Party
Author: Jessica Williams
Illustrator: Jimena de la Vega
Publisher: All Write Here Publishing, $19.59
Publication Date: 19 November 2019
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781999539726
For ages: 3 - 7
Type: Picture Book