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

Friday 24 March 2023

Review: Little Lunch: The Monkey Bars

The Little Lunch books are a wickedly sparkling series for children (and their adults) to fall into with hilarity and glee. Cleverly chaotic words and messy, inky images with line-drawings all intermingle in the most perfect, unexpected and disgusting ways.

Melanie Applebum wants a turn on the monkey bars but Tamara Noodle is hogging them. Again. So the two have a face-off (or hang-off, actually). Both of them know that Tamara will win, but Melanie’s making a point. And that’s the point of this story. Melanie stands up to the mean power of the monkey bar queen and has a little win for herself in The Monkey Bars.  

In The Bench Beside The Bin, Manny’s massive sandwich causes a stir with his classmates, who investigate the contents with great curiosity plus communal disagreement about beetroot. It’s pretty funny and quite ooky at the same time.

Then on dress-up day in The Shelter Shed, Battie’s batman costume doesn’t bring him superhero status, although he tries quite hard to save his classmates (who are all perfectly fine and not in need of saving). Mrs Gonsha does, however, need to rescue Battie himself, when he’s accosted by a little furry, white, friendly dog.   

Continuing in the tradition of depicting children at their best and worst simultaneously, this particular book shares ideas around resilience, standing up for yourself, dealing with anxiety, friendship and fun.

All the new editions of Little Lunch contain bonus stuff. This one has making activities, a bored game, (worst) speller competition, smelly sandwich ideas, monkey bar tricks and more. And Little Lunch is now also a television series to boot!

Highly recommended (except for the squeamish).  Check out Elizabeth's reviews of more titles from the Little Lunch series

Title: Little Lunch: The Monkey Bars
Author: Danny Katz
Illustrator: Mitch Vane
Publisher: Walker Books, $14.99
Publication Date: January 2023
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781760656782
For ages: 8 - 10
Type: Junior Fiction