Illus. by Peter Carnavas. Puffin Books, 2019. ISBN: 9780143793793.
(Age: 4+) Highly recommended. Themes: Snoring, Fathers, Family. From the pen of well known Australian writer, musician and entertainer, John Williamson, comes this wonderfully inviting read aloud about fathers and snoring.
All children will recognise someone in their family with snores so loud they keep the house awake and drown out the television.
Readers will love reading the rhyming lines ending with the rhyming phrases,
What are we going to do?
Your dad, does he snore too?
This repeated pair of lines invites the readers to share stories from their experiences, and laugh at the familiarity of seeing another family so afflicted.
Each page brims with an inviting easily read text, begging to be read aloud, asking children to come in with the repeated refrain, while getting a kick out of the illustrations.
We see dad snoring through doors and walls, mum kicking him to get him to stop. We see him compared to a steam train, thunder and rain, an old school bus, and while the house rattles and shakes, he hisses like a brown snake or a dinosaur.
The family tries a number of remedies to halt the noise, putting a peg on his nose, wearing ear muffs, putting pillows over their heads, but he laughs, not seeing the problem at all. Even taking a film of him snoring does not have any effect. Eventually the family works out a solution and the image of the sleep deprived family hammering in the tent pegs at the bottom of the garden will satisfy all readers that a way to fix the problem has been found.
Carnavas’ illustrations hit the mark. I loved reading the book again, spying the looks on the faces as I turned the pages, seeing the animals included in the snore affected family, and helping with the resolution at the end.
I love the endpapers initially showing five frazzled galahs unable to roost because of the noise, while the last endpaper shows them happily asleep on the chimney.
This is an enjoyable read for families and classes as Father’s Day approaches but its universal theme of solving a universal problem will be lauded.
- Fran Knight