For my next review I’ll be looking at Solomon Crocodile, written and illustrated by Catherine Rayner.
My Rating: 7 out of 10
My Son’s Rating: 8 out of 10
The story is about a cheeky crocodile who just wants to play. Unfortunately, he keeps on making everyone unhappy by his wicked manner.
Catherine Rayner has done a wonderful job illustrating this book, the splatter type effect used on Solomon and the way she has drawn the storks and hippo works very well as a children’s picture book and I can understand why it won the Kate Greenway Medal.
The text is simple and easy to read, I’d say it is aimed at the 4 to 7-year-old market and I believe Catherine achieved her original goals for the story. The setting is in a jungle and you can tell this by the colours and scenery used – lots of greens, reds and yellows.
It’s not a story where the character changes his naughty trait, unlike Naughty Naughty Monster, but something good does happen to him at the end which makes me believe there may be follow up books. After a quick google, Yes I can see a follow-up!
Solomon doesn’t listen to what the animals are telling him which leads him down a path where he eventually feels lonely, this is what makes the story work because it’s reflective of an actual child’s mood when they don’t get their way, I’ve learnt that much from my own boys.
I wouldn’t say it’s an original, but it’s a cute little story designed to showcase how well Catherine Rayner can illustrate and combine the theme and setting to the text. From the start, we are told Solomon is trouble and we go on an adventure to see just how bothersome he can get with the other animals.
I did enjoy reading this but was hoping for a different type of ending, due to the character’s nature so I can’t give it full marks.
Comments from my son:
“I liked the part where he gets a friend.”
If you liked this book, I recommend “Naughty Naughty Monster” by Kaye Umansky and illustrated by Greg Abbott.
DID YOU LIKE THIS REVIEW?
As any reviewer will tell you, do your homework, and the results will pay off, so homework is what I did. If you feel I’ve missed something, please let me know. I’ve got notes upon notes of what to put in and leave out. Likewise, if it’s too long or too short do let me know. I’m refining this skill little by little every day.