I so wish this was the title of one of my every day blogs. Oh to have a Gogglynipper and to find out it had escaped! Life would be so exciting.
But no! It is the title of a book I have been sent by Top That Publishing to review and it is written by James McKnight and illustrated by Mark Chambers.
The story goes that there is a farmer called McDoogle who has a Monster Farm and ‘on that farm he had some Monsters. Eee I, Eee I, Oh!’ *sings* (sorry there was no way I could stop myself from doing that, that was completely involuntary!)
So….back on topic…… on this farm there is also a little boy called Diggle who helps Farmer McDoogle look after the monsters. Diggle is the hero of the book who accidentally loses one of the monsters and has to go and find him. He searches high and low and eventually falls in a huge pile of Gogglynipper poo which gives him a clue as to where it is hiding. It is in a very big dark cave, and as Gogglynippers can be very ‘big’ and also very ‘dramatic’ he is rather scared of going in there to fetch it.
As it happens the Gogglynipper is so pleased to see him that he rushes out and licks him all over like a huge oversized labrador. Phew! Diggle is so relieved to find him and begins the journey home with the Gogglynipper in tow. Unfortunately the Gogglynipper smells some particularly fragrant smelly socks (Gogglynippers love eating smelly socks) and dashes off leaving Diggle chasing after him. Luckily the smelly socks belong to Farmer McDoogle who is resting with his feet out of the window, and even more luckily he moves them before the Gogglynipper tries to eat them.
The moral of the story is, if you want your Gogglynippers to find their way home, don’t wash your socks! A helpful, life affirming kind of message I thought.
Narrative aside, the illustrations are really charming. They are hand drawn, cartoony and full of character and easy on the eye. There’s also a fair bit of detail to pick out, and it has a great sense of humour.
My one criticism is that I find it almost impossible to say ‘Gogglynipper’ and ‘Noober’ (the name of the dog). In fact, and this is hand on heart true, I kept calling them ‘Googlynipples’ and the poor doggy got called ‘Nobber’ a few times. No I hadn’t been drinking and no it’s not Freudian.
As for my kid’s opinions – they love it. Good pace of story, cute illustrations, great novelty factor and I’ve had to read it at least 7 times at bedtime, over the last two weeks. The Day the Gogglynipper Escaped has been one that they’ve asked for specifically so they do enjoy reading it, my son in particular.
If you’d like a copy of this book it is £5.39 reduced from £5.99 and you can find it HERE!