Lane Smith

LONGLIST REVIEW: Penguin Problems

According to one little penguin, being a penguin is not all it's cracked up to be. It's too early, too cold, too noisy, too snowy- everything is just too much! All aspects of penguin life which sound like they should be penguin pleasures just make this little penguin mad and miserable! In the middle of all his self-indulgent moaning, he is tapped on the shoulder by a walrus, who calmly, but firmly, points out the many good things in life. Every body has the odd bad day, but the beauty of nature, the companionship and love of his family and friends are things to be appreciated and valued. And although he listens, our little penguin still can't quite shake of his bad mood!

We are all a bit penguin at times! Nothing is right- everything is wrong. Wise Walrus is the voice of reason, pointing out all the positives of life and for a little while, penguin listens, but (like us all!) he soon slips back to his moaning.

The illustrations are just wonderful, full of humour and life. The range of expressions achieved on the little black and white penguin is incredible. The underwater scenes are just brilliant and the pictures perfectly complement Jory John's dry, understated sense of humour.

Reminding us to appreciate what we have and look for the pleasure of life, 'Penguin Problems' is a wonderful book that would make an excellent story time as well as being the perfect starting point for lots of discussions. The ice is always whiter on the other side of the glacier!

Penguin Problems    Jory John, illustrated by Lane Smith

Walker Books    ISBN: 978-1406375992