Saturday, July 21, 2012

Two new Kiwi Corkers

Goldie and the Three Penguins by Chris Gurney, illus. Sarah Nelisiwe Anderson, Scholastic NZ
One of the latest titles in the popular  Kiwi Corkers series, this hardback book presents an amusing and ultra-modern take on Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Goldie sets off to buy a jelly-tip ice-cream but is lured by the smell of fish and chips to the house of the three Penguins.  When she eats the meal of Chick Penguin, she says, “My oh my, that was really kapai!” This mantra is repeated throughout the story as Goldie tries out the chairs and the beds. Everyone can guess the ending – Goldie runs back to the loving arms of her mother. Children who know the original story (and are favourably inclined towards movie-style penguins) will enjoy the inter-textual links. The rhyming text is fairly demanding to read aloud but should be entertaining if read with panache. The illustrations are lively, intriguing and very modern – using a style that combines  a semi-comic-book format with digital painting and digital collage. Goldie’s snarls of blonde wool hair provide an interesting motif (and of course her mum has the same). Best for primary-aged children.
ISBN 978 1 77543 043 8 $18.50 Hb
The Frog Footie Player by Chris Gurney, illus. John Bennett, Scholastic NZ
Another Kiwi Corkers title, this is a very New Zealand version of The Frog Prince. Youngsters might not know the original story as well as they know the Goldilocks one, but it’s still an entertaining read. Kiri’s lost rugby ball is returned to her by a frog called Archie. All he wants in return is to watch rugby on TV with a pillow and some chocolate fish. Kiri isn’t keen, but her dad says she must keep her promise. In the excitement of watching the game, Kiri gives Archie a kiss – and he turns into an All Black!!! The cartoon-style pictures are suitably bright and friendly, done using Corel Painter. Primary-aged boys will enjoy the rugby theme – and girls are likely to enjoy the rugby-mad heroine.

ISBN 978 1 77543 057 5 $18.50 Hb

Reviewed by Lorraine Orman

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