Dianne Hofmeyr, illus. Jesse Hodgson. Hereford: Otter-Barry Books, hb, 978 1 9109 5941 1, 2019, £11.99, 32pp.
Picture book, fiction, 4-7 years
A little boy visits an art gallery to see the painting “Surprise” by Rousseau, and the tiger in the picture draws his attention.
In his dreams the tiger comes to him and together they go on various adventures. But there is always something that scares him – what does he actually fear? A ride is so high that he might fall and be hurt. A river has too many eels in the water and he is not a strong swimmer. However, the tiger finds ways to mitigate all these fears and in the end, the boy feels less scared than before. Perhaps after all he is braver than he imagined.
Hodgson’s full colour illustrations, particularly the depiction of the tiger in the jungle, are truly mesmerising. Even children who are reluctant readers are likely to be enticed by these magnificent pictures. The book can be used from early childhood to the age of seven.
Review by Rebecca Butler