This copy of The Bad Tempered Ladybird by Eric Carle was a charity shop bargain, think it came in a bundle for a pound with some other books. I’d have paid a pound for this, especially as it’s the hardback edition. Eric Carle’s illustrations are hugely distinctive – if you’ve read the hungry caterpillar, you’d recognise this as being by the same author. (And if you haven’t read it, how precisely? Some books are classic because they really are classics, not just because they’ve been hyped.)
Not wishing to disclose any spoilers on this one, but it’s about a bad tempered ladybird, looking for someone to pick a fight with. He starts with a good tempered ladybird, but he’s too small, so then we work our way through the day and up the animal sizes until we eventually get to a whale…
The pages start off small, with small writing, and there’s a little clock with the time on it at the top of the page too. So lots to engage the mind as the pages get larger, with steadily increased size of writing and larger and larger animals. The clocks stay the same size though the time changes. Smallest recognises them as clocks, and goes through the book naming the animals. Cat, cat, cat, bird, cat, cat, dog….I’m not quite sure how her naming convention works yet. I think there are cats, and there are furry animals who are not cats and therefore must be dogs, and then there are things which aren’t furry so are neither. Oh, and there are birds. She likes birds.
A bad tempered ladybird isn’t in the same league as A Hungry Caterpillar. I think if anything there’s too much to it. But it’s still a book that’s very easy to read over and over again – your toddler will love it, and you won’t hate it, which makes it about as good as it gets for a read aloud.
This was book 77
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