24 May 2017 by Christina Barker
Title: Cheeky Monkey (Stories of animal sign series)
Author: Xue Lin
Reviewer: Christina Barker
On the cover, Cheeky Monkey sticks his big red bottom in the air and dives down into the river looking fairly concerned. It makes me want to read the story and find out why this monkey is so cheeky. What’s his story?
Inside, it explains that Cheeky Monkey is a very big monkey. Why he is so much bigger than everything else though, it doesn’t explain. The book describes him very well so it builds up a distinctive picture in the child’s mind, even if they can’t see the illustration.
I’m surprised that Cheeky Monkey didn’t come in the top 3 of the race. He actually came 9th in the race. Cheeky Monkey was not happy about this. He became very angry and ended up being tied up. I read this story to my son (aged 5) and he was really sad that the monkey has been tied up after being naughty. He said that animals shouldn’t be tied up like that. He was happy that Cheeky Monkey managed to break free in the end and he really enjoyed this one. I think it’s his favourite so far!
Reviewer: Taylor Brooker
My favourite thing about this book is how easy it is to learn the Mandarin words for several colours on the first page. Every Snowflake book features words on each page in a different colour, which corresponds to the word in the same colour in the Mandarin text underneath. As the colours are written in their colours on this first page (e.g. the word ‘blue’ is written in the colour blue, and ‘blue’ in Mandarin is also written in the colour blue), it just makes it that much easier to learn, and really makes the words stand out.
The text to image ratio and design are, again, excellent, and the reader can follow the text and imagery without being interrupted or disturbed by anything.
This book also seems to be very popular with the children in our school events! I think children are naturally drawn to things that are mischievous, and Cheeky Monkey is certainly that. However, near the end of the story, the monkey is caught red-handed by Buddha who teaches him to control his temper, thus giving the story a moral, which is great for children to read.
Look out for more reviews from Taylor and Christina soon!