Gerald the Lion

Gerald the Lion
Jessica Souhami
Otter-Barry Books

In a departure from her more usual folk tale renditions Jessica Souhami sets her tale of Gerald in an urban jungle.
Full of boldness Gerald the lion – a character youngsters will instantly see is a domesticated grey cat – decides to explore his neighbourhood jungle.

It’s an environment full of strange sounds and sights – there’s the roar of creatures in the tree branches,

weird beings from outer space (a trio of snails); hungry crocodiles swimming in the lake, and some giants stop to speak to him when he pauses his perambulation.

Suddenly there appears a fiery dragon that causes Gerald to leap in alarm

and then he finds himself lost and completely alone.

Poor Gerald: will he find his way back home?

We all, but especially young children, hear strange noises from time to time imagining all kinds of scary things might be lurking, and so it is here in Jessica’s simple but clever tale: a tale wherein the incongruity between her telling of the extended joke and her hallmark bold, bright collage style illustrations work perfectly together.

With its large clear print this book is ideal for early reading as well as for sharing with little ones during story sessions where I envisage it becoming a firm favourite.

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