No school today.
Where is everybody?
It’s time to play.
It’s Sunday morning, which means no school – so why is the narrator of this story the only one up? That’s not really a problem, because she’ll soon have them all moving – cats and kittens, dogs and puppies, little brothers, and even Mum and Dad, will soon be awake and part of her games.
This is a lovely family story of waking up and spending time together. Told in catchy rhyming text which encourages prediction by even very young readers, and also supports guessing of what is under the flaps on some of the spreads. Sturdy card stock and a toddler friendly size ensure this will withstand frequent loving (and reading!).
First published in 2008, and newly released.
Come on Everybody, Time to Play!, by Nigel Gray & Bob Graham
Walker Books, 2012
Available in good bookstores and online.
The sun is up and so is the main character in Come on Everybody, Time to Play. A small girl is revelling in the weekend and not having to get ready for school. She wanders through the house but it seems that everyone is hiding from her. It doesn’t seem to occur to her that everyone is still asleep! Openings alternate between her searching, then finding the other occupants of the house. When she has found all but two, it’s time for a group assault on the final two sleeping bods! Bob Graham’s gentle yet strong character sketches speak loud as the little girl searches her house for company. Backgrounds are minimal allowing the characters to shine. Text is large and round and like hand printing.
Come on Everybody, Time to Play is written in gentle rhyme. The reader (listener) can hear the sound of the words and predict what is to be found under each flap. Of course nothing – no one – is where they should be! The fish is in the cat’s water bowl and socks are all over the place. Come on Everybody, Time to Play is a largish, hardcover, sturdy-paged lift-the-flap book, designed for multiple re-readings. Recommended for pre-schoolers.
Come on Everybody, Time to Play! Nigel Gray Ill Bob Graham
Walker Books 2009
review by Claire Saxby, Children’s Author
This book can be purchased online at Fishpond. Buying through this link supports Aussiereviews.
You should have come to the Great Aussie Do,
The guest list read like an Aussie Who’s Who,
And Kangaroo played his didgeridoo.
With a possum in a pink tutu, a well-dressed cockatoo and a gecko sporting a tattoo, the guest-list at this Outback shindig is both impressive and funny. Author Nigel Gray manages to keep the same end-rhyme working throughout the story, which will amuse young readers and listeners and help them to predict the rhyming words as well. Adult readers will find it easy to capture the rhythm of the piece.
The comic-style illustrations of Glen Singleton are a perfect complement and the tease of having just the end of Kangaroo’s didgeridoo visible on all but the last two illustrations will keep youngsters turning pages and avoids repetitiveness in the illustrations.
First released in 1995, it is easy to see why this offering continues to be popular. There is no great conflict or puzzle to be solved – it is simply a fine rhyme detailing the guest list and happenings at the party. The interest is in the variety of attendees and in the already-mentioned end-rhyme.
And Kangaroo Played His Didgeridoo, by Nigel Gray, illustrated by Glen Singleton
Scholastic, 1995, this edition 2005