The Adventures of the Owl and the Pussycat
Written by Coral Rumble and illustrated by Charlotte Cooke
Published by Parragon, £5.99
We received this book last week as part of the Parragon book buddy scheme, and it has been an immediate hit. The older children read it themselves straight away, and then I read it to all of them together. We enjoyed the imaginative illustrations and the simply, beautifully written rhyming text.
“The Owl and the Pussycat went to sea
In a box on the living room floor,
They sailed away for a year and a day
And these are the things that they saw…”
So begins the adventure of two curious children whose cardboard box boat takes them out to sea where they meet a “wiggly, squiggly eel”, a ” cheerful seal”, a “swordfish in a fight/ With a pirate late at night” and many other characters. Eventually they arrive at a “cave on the shore/ With a green seaweed door…” before sailing home again where they fall asleep “by the light of the moon.”
It was bedtime when I read the story to the children, but it sparked off such an imaginative game that I let them stay up far too late. It was the kind of deeply involved play that you just can’t interrupt!
Two armchairs became a boat, a blue blanket the sea, and another blanket draped over chairs formed a cave. Provisions and teddies (and cuddly broccoli!) were packed, and they set sail.
After eating a picnic or two en route, they arrived at their destination and explored the cave, where they found a treasure box. They carefully loaded it into the boat and sailed back home, fending off a pirate ship on the way.
The little ones then spent some time playing with the treasure, while Monkey re-read the book, and then it really was time for bed. We all gathered together to listen to Daddy reading the original version of The Owl and the Pussy-cat, by Edward Lear, which was a lovely way to finish off what had turned out to be a rather special evening.
We were sent the book free of charge for the purpose of this review.