19 August 2009

Poor Little Dino Spark

by Robert Vescio. Illustrated by Dean Jacobs

Little Steps Publishing. Australian, Picture, Young Reader. Paperback rrp $16.95

The first thing you notice with Poor Little Dino Spark is the cover. Spark’s sad face with its wonderful colours and expressions makes you want to take him home! The illustrations are glorious.

My son somehow managed to coax his father into reading this book with him and then half an hour later managed to get his mother, ME, into reading with him too. That is all the recommendation you need for a book.

Spark is a shy dinosaur who sits alone watching three friends’ play together. They ask him to join them but Spark’s kite is caught in the tree and he is too embarrassed to ask them to help him. Plus he doesn’t want them to laugh at his small size. But Trixie soon helps Spark with his dilemma and as the story says … “three best dino friends became four”.

I found some of the rhymes clumsy and forced. But while they were jarring to adult ears, my youngest son asked for them to be read a second time.

This is a story with an important values lesson about how one child can help another. Being the biggest isn’t always the best and Poor Little Dino Spark can help children realise that “two heads are better than one”.

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