Storytime Saturday a weekly blog feature showcasing any new books we’ve been reading with Erin, reviewing picture books and talking about our monthly library haul! Basically, Storytime Saturday is all about books! This week we’re talking about Also an Octopus by Maggie Tokuda-Hall and Benji Davies. It was published by Walker Books on 5th January 2017.
From Benji Davies, the illustrator of The Storm Whale and Grandad’s Island, comes a metafictive story about … how to build a story! First, a story needs a character. So why not a ukulele-playing octopus? And since this is a story, the octopus has to want something – maybe it dreams of travelling to faraway galaxies in a purple spaceship. But every character needs an obstacle to overcome, and when the octopus sets out to build its own spaceship out of glue, umbrellas, glitter and waffles … well, he doesn’t have much luck. Could there be another character that could help? Debut author Maggie Tokuda-Hall sets up a funny, smart and warm-hearted story all about storytelling, then hands the baton to imaginative readers, who will be more than prepared to take it away.
Oh what a wonderful book this is. It amazes me how people come up with such good ideas for children’s books. The premise for this one is so super simple but it works so well.
Always an Octopus starts off with nothing. I mean nothing. As in blank white page nothing. This is how all stories start out though, which is the whole point. Always an Octopus helps to teach children how to construct a story and what they need to make one up. After the blank beginning you need characters! You need something that happens, a problem, a resolution. You need an ending.
The book is so bright and colourful, with pages and illustrations being mostly blue, purple and yellow. The characters and story are just as bright and interesting and it each page will be sure to capture any child’s eye, and hopefully their imagination.
Disclaimer: We were sent this book for the purpose of this review. All opinions are our own.