Reviews /

Just Like Brothers

Authored by Elizabeth Baguley
Illustrated by Aurélie Blanz
Published by Barefoot Books

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Just Like Brothers tells the tale of the meeting of a boy and a wolf cub in the woods. Near the woods live a little boy and his mother. The mother warns her son to watch out for wolves, but he doesn’t listen. Instead he chases rabbits.

And in the woods live a wolf cub and his mother. The wolf warns her son to watch out for people, but he doesn’t listen. Instead he chases rabbits.

The story begins before the two meet, with each mother issuing this warning to their child of the dangers of encountering the other. When the boy and the cub cross paths, their heads are full of their mothers’ warnings, so they are surprised at what they find.

The story itself is a sweet tale of an unlikely friendship which gently speaks of wider themes of tolerance and respect for others. The poetic writing style is only enhanced by the beautiful, energetic illustrations which they are accompanied by.

Just Like Brothers would be well suited as a class read in the infant years. It would work simply as an afternoon read, but it also has the potential to act as a springboard for further learning.

The playful, poetic language of the story provides an opportunity for word-finding activities and producing word banks to use in creative writing.

There is also the potential for this book to be used as a starting point for exploring and writing non-fiction texts about wolves. Outdoor learning could be integrated if this project was widened to include research into woodland habitats.

Just Like Brothers would make an excellent discussion starter on friendship and getting to know someone without judging on the views of others. 

Another triumph from Barefoot Books. several of the stunning illustrations can be viewed on Aurélie Blanz website.