I Love My Dad, by Anna Walker

My name is Ollie.
I love my dad.

Ollie, who has featured in several titles in the last two years, is back to share the relationship he shares with his dad. Actually, there is no indication of Ollie’s gender and readers can choose whether or not they wish to assign gender. Ollie is a small, striped anthropomorphic zebra who shares his world with the reader. In I Love My Dad Ollie shares the wonderful ordinary elements of a father-child relationship. Ollie and his dad climb trees, make cakes and more. Illustrations are watercolour on mostly white pages. Text is simple and minimal, in a clear handwriting font. I Love My Dad is a small square hardback book with bright yellow endpapers with naïve sketches of tree branches and birds.

Ollie is a loving and very likeable character, a young child clothed in zebra coveralls. His world is simple and defined by the relationships he shares with those around him. There is the overt relationship with Dad but there is also Fred, his dog, a sister and a teddy to take to bed. Walker uses few words and it is the spaces between her words that speak loudest. Her images are deceptively simple too, but pack a full emotional punch. Small children will relate to the action, from the swings in the park to piggyback rides and the cooking with Dad. Recommended for preschool-aged children.

I Love My Dad

I Love My Dad Anna Walker
Scholastic 2009

This book can be purchased online from Fishpond. Buying through this link supports Aussiereviews.

review by Claire Saxby, Children’s Author