Just Imagine

Chatterbox Bear

Authored by Pippa Curnick
Illustrated by Pippa Curnick
Published by Hodder Children's Books

Gary is the world’s biggest chatterbox and when none of his friends want to listen anymore, he sets sail to find new friends to talk to.

Having ‘chatted everywhere, to everyone, all the time’ the other bears just want to find some peace and quiet and so sadly Gary packs up his bag and sets out to find someone who likes chatting as much as he does. After some issues with his leaky boat, he finds himself washed up on a tiny island full of birds. The birds love to chat but unfortunately, they only speak Bird and Gary only speaks Bear. Gary is hungry, thirsty and sad. Dot the bird finally sees that Gary can also communicate with his eyebrows; can the birds and Gary use this new language to finally chat? There is also a lovely comic ending with the arrival of Barry the dog (but no spoilers!)

I really loved this book. It was full of fun and the imaginative use of seaweed, leaves, fuzzy bugs, string, sticks, prawns and worms by the birds to help communicate really made me laugh and then explore the pages even more carefully.

It explores the difficulties of not having a common language, in a bright and humorous, easily accessible way. I would use it to explore this theme and the fun illustrations would easily engage readers of all ages. The arrival of Barry at the end also gives ample opportunity for older pupils to write the next chapter, perhaps for a younger audience.

On a very rainy day it made me smile…perhaps as I quite like a good chat too!