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The Gruffalo - Julia Donaldson

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      03.11.2013 00:49
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      Clever, heartwarming and unforgettable - a great little story

      My first son was a toddler when a relative suggested a couple of books he might like and this was one of them. I duly purchased it and although that same boy is now six and we have read numerous books together in that time, The Gruffalo remains my favourite. I just think the story is so clever and of course, like all her books, its so nicely told. The rhyming provides a lovely relaxing vibe which definitely helps both my sons to wind down at bedtime. At this stage, I nearly know it off by heart, as does my eldest son. When approaching Christmas a couple of years ago we realised they were animating it for BBC television we were beyond delighted. I hope the programme brought it to a wider audience so others may enjoy the story as we do. We have since bought The Gruffalo's Child, which while a nice story, still does not surpass the original. Indeed, I was inspired to buy some of Julia Donaldson's other books and although they are good reads, The Gruffalo remains a favourite. What more could an author want for their book but that it lives on in the memories of its readers for years to come. Thank you, Ms Donaldson!

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        14.07.2013 22:47
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        lovely story book

        I have mentioned my personal love of Julia Donaldson books in previous reviews and The Gruffalo is probably the most famous of all of them and certainly the one for which she is most known. I had certainly heard of the gruffalo before I had even read the book - having come across various merchandise such as clothing, children's plates and cutlery sets and even easter eggs. For Christmas, we bought my son a lot of books as he has a real love of them and was just getting to grips with bedtime stories. One of those we purchased was The Gruffalo in hardback which cost us just £3 in the WHSmith book sale. It currently prices at £4 in paperback on Amazon.

        The story is about a fast witted mouse that foils the attempts of various predators to eat him by telling them of his friend the gruffalo that likes to eat them. The mouse tells them of his terrible tusk and terrible jaws etc and that his favourite food is owl ice cream etc. This is the mouse's imagination but he does actually run into a gruffalo on his travels that, of course, also quite fancies the mouse for a meal. He tells the gruffalo that he should be scared of the mouse as he is the toughest creature in the forest and instructs the gruffalo to walk behind him to see this. He then runs into all the animals that had earlier tried to eat him and they run scared as they can see the gruffalo. The gruffalo is astounded that the mouse is so scary but leaves him alone.

        The text is fun and in rhyming sentences throughout. It is easy to read as a bed time story as it flows so well. It is also good as there are various characters in the book so you can use different voices for each, which my son enjoys. At first, my son wasn't sure about the book, I think he was a little uneasy about the illustrations of the gruffalo which is basically an ugly monster! He has grown to love it though and loves looking at the illustrations, which are beautiful, as we work our way through the pages. I personally love the story too as I think it is clever and amusing and very unique. It is quite a short book too so is great for toddlers - it holds my son's attention well. It is a book that I never tire of reading and one that my son requests a lot too - so that is an indication of it's appeal to toddlers. Definitely recommended.

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          14.07.2013 20:48
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          A children's classic

          ==Overview==

          After much hype and many awards, I decided to buy The Gruffalo as a paperback for my baby daughter, who although can't read it herself, absolutely loves being read to. Many of my friend's children have had Gruffalo themed birthday parties so I figured it was probably a modern day classic amongst children's books. It was written by Julia Donaldson who wrote Room on the Broom which you'll probably remember from school if you are about 30 years old like I am. The cost of the book was £4 from Amazon.

          ==My Opinion==

          First of all, this book would be perfect as a board book for my inquisitive daughter who likes to touch and eat everything. As it is paperback, we never give it to her to hold in case she gets a paper cut, but give her another board book to do what she wants with at the same time we are reading. After reading this book just once, I can see why it has been such a big hit. It is a book about a mouse who tries to fend off potential "diners" (an owl, a fox and a snake) by inventing a scary character who he describes in detail....of course it's a Gruffalo. The Owl, fox and snake seem scared by this creature and leave the mouse alone and decide not to eat him. Imagine the mouse's surprise when he meets an actual Gruffalo in the woods!! The moral of the story is kind of "don't pick on the smallest in the forest" I guess.

          The book takes between five and ten minutes to read, so ideal for a bed time story. The pictures are vividly illustrated and brightly coloured and my little one loves to look at the pages. The real strength of the book is the fact that it rhymes so I tend to half talk and half sing the story to her as it has a lovely rhythm. There is a lot of repetition in the book with just slight variations on words which is good to develop older children's vocabulary and help them memorise the poetry within. It can teach them about rhyme and rhythm. Obviously at the moment my daughter is too young to understand this but she absolutely loves it when I do different voices and get excited or whisper the words to her. Her face lights up and she claps her hands more than any other children's book I read to her.

          ==Overall==

          I think this is a classic for little ones and will be interesting for babies up to children aged 7-8. I am looking forward to buying The Gruffalo's Child which is the sequel. A bargain for £4, I personally would have preferred a board book and paid a bit more for it, just so grubby little fingers and chewy little teeth could have enjoyed it a bit more.

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            17.06.2013 14:32
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            A great reader for younger and older readers alike.

            Introduction:-

            First released in 1988 The Gruffalo is one of many successful publications written by Julia Donaldson and illustrated by Axel Scheffler and has sold over 10 million copies in its 25 years of existence. The Gruffalo is actually a book I remember fondly from my own childhood and is a title I was keen to get a copy of for our daughter. With a recommended price of £6.99 I am usually priced out of buying books like this on the high street, however I pretty reliably manage to find them new for around the£3.50 mark either in one of the big supermarkets or after a quick search on the internet, and at that price they are a definite bargain.


            The Story:-

            Julia Donaldson as always seems to effortlessly make the telling of the story fast flowing and rhythmic, as the reader follows a mouse on its journey through the deep dark wood only to encounter a fox, an owl and a snake all of which think that the mouse looks good to eat and can't wait to invite him back for lunch. However each animal that the quick witted mouse meets is soon put off when he tells them the reason he is taking a stroll in the deep dark wood is to meet The Gruffalo for tea. When the mouse tells the fox of The Grufallo's terrible tusks, and claws and the fact that its favourite food is roast fox, the fox beats a hasty retreat. As the mouse gets further into the wood his imagination runs away with him as he describes the imaginary Gruffalo to each animal but he has no idea he is about to come face to face with his own creation.

            Once again however the quick witted mouse manages to think fast and get out of trouble by telling The Gruffalo how he is the scariest animal in the wood. Not convinced The Gruffalo decides to take a stroll with the mouse back through the deep dark wood meeting the animals again along the way. As soon as the animals see that the mouse is accompanied by The Gruffalo they take flight and hide, which manages to convince The Gruffalo that the mouse really must be the scariest creature the wood and when the mouse mentions his favourite food is Gruffalo crumble The Gruffalo is sure not to hang around.

            Following the mouse on its stroll through the deep dark wood is an amusing adventure even for adults especially when reading aloud due to the lyrical writing style and the fact that the book rhymes so easily throughout without detracting from the story itself. Julia Donaldson's writing style makes The Gruffalo great for reading aloud to younger readers from 18 months up as the way emphasis is placed on words due to the way the text rhymes and flows really well means our 2 year old daughter has picked up loads and loads of words from Julia Donaldson books in the last year. This said however I can see the Gruffalo coming to life when being read with a group of kids as there is opportunity to join in on every page due to the repetitive nature of the story and the fast pace is enough to keep the little ones from getting bored too quickly, whilst allowing for the book to be read in 5 - 10 minutes if needs be.

            The style of the writing and the pace that the story trots along at makes this a captivating read that in no way shows its age and the fact that it was first published over 25 years ago, and could just have easily been published yesterday. In my eyes this book outshines most modern children's books that I have read to my daughter over the past couple of years and is on par with Julia Donaldson's other publications.


            Illustrations:-

            In my opinion Axel Scheffler's illustrations easily keep up with the quality of Julia Donaldson's writing, and are again somehow timeless meaning they hold the same appeal and amusement for my daughter now as they must have for me 25 years ago which I consider to be an amazing feat. Whilst being simple the illustrations are full of colour and background action with lots to name and point out along the way apart from what is going on in the main characters and what is going on in the story. The balance of words and illustrations is perfect with the illustrations polishing off the story rather than being over bearing.

            Whilst there is plenty to look at in each illustration they fit perfectly alongside the text in the story meaning they are a great aid for not only teaching words, but also what those words relate to. If the text was completely removed from this book the pictures would do a great job of telling the story by themselves, which I feel is another reason that this book is a great educational tool. The bright bold illustrations from Axel Scheffler also do a great job of portraying The Gruffalo, as whilst my daughter knows that The Gruffalo is a scary creature she is not actually scared of it and I feel this book could have been completely different if The Gruffalo had been mis-represented.

            The Gruffalo is one of the titles from nearer the beginning of Julia Donaldson's and Axle Scheffler's partnership and it shows this in no way what-so-ever. The way the illustrations fit snugly around the story and the way that Axle Scheffler seems to bring Julia Donaldson's characters to life in his illustrations really shows that these two combine to great effect with the illustrations really taking The Gruffalo a cut above the rest.


            In Conclusion:-

            In conclusion just in case you haven't already guessed I feel that this is another great book from the Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler team being perfect in just about every way I can think of. I have tried picking holes in it and found nothing that I can actually fault this book on. It is great for reading aloud as well as being a great educational tool. The pages and covers of the book wipe clean if caught quickly enough with a baby wipe, and are pretty resistant to tearing although our copy does have a few felt tip marks in which we didn't catch in time.

            Whilst the recommended price of these books is generally on the expensive side I do feel that books from Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler really are worth the £6.99 asking price and anything cheaper than this is truly a bargain so it is great they are generally available on the internet for around half this price. So overall from me I cannot fault this book in anyway what-so-ever, and given the fact that both me and my daughter love to sit down and read this book together definitely makes this worth 5/5 stars in my eyes.

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              11.11.2012 13:17
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              Great little rhyming story about a clever little mouse

              I had heard of this book before, but I never paid much attention to it. I was looking for books for the little one, as the books she already had were a little babyish, so I did a quick Google search for must have children's books and the book that popped up on many a page was 'The Gruffalo', swayed by public opinion, I immediately ordered myself a copy (for my daughter of course).

              ==What is the Gruffalo?==

              Well according to the book, "He has terrible tusks and terrible claws and terrible teeth in his terrible jaws". Seriously though, 'The Gruffalo' is a children's book written by Children's Laureate, Julia Donaldson and it tells the story of a clever little mouse, who tells all the animals who want to eat him, that he is going to have tea with a creature that doesn't exist...that is until he is all alone in "The deep dark wood" and encounters the made up creature, and this time the creature wants to eat him. What follows is another piece of cunning on the mouses part, but I'm not going to spoil it for you, so you will have to read it yourself to find out, all I am going to say is, that it left me with a big smile on my face after reading it. The story is told in a the form of rhyme and it has a lovely rhythm to it when you are reading it to your child, or even sitting alone reading it, as I did when at first my daughter was a little bit scared of it.

              The book is wonderfully illustrated by Axel Scheffler, who has joined forces with Julia on 14 of her books such as 'Room on the Broom', 'The Gruffalo's Child', and 'The Snail and the Whale' to name but a few. All of Julia Donaldson's books that Schleffler has participated in look familiar, he has a certain style to his work, that when you see a Donaldson book that he has worked on it is instantly recognizable.

              ==About the Author==

              Julia Donaldson is a children's author and playwright, she is the current Children's Laureate, and in 2011 she was awarded the MBE for her services to literature. She started off writing songs for children's television, until one of her books was published in 1993. Along with her children's books, she has written plays for school drama groups.

              ==Price==

              The R.R.P for this book is £6.99 but you can purchase it for £4.19 including delivery from amazon.co.uk or as part of a set including 10 books written by the same author for £9.99 + £2.80 delivery from redhouse.co.uk (a really good site for purchasing children's books).

              ==Verdict==

              My daughter loves this book, although it has taken her a while to let me read it to her and sat on a shelf for a couple of months at first. I must have read this book to her at least once a day for the last month and it is a good length that she doesn't get bored or restless with it, as she has done with other books I have read to her. She loves talking about the illustrations and usually tells me what is going to happen before I even turn the page (as most kids do). I have had a look through a few of Julia Donaldsons books since purchasing this and although this is the only one I own, I can see Santa bringing a few more for Christmas. In a nutshell (excuse the pun for those who have read the book), this is a must read for anyone(not just children) of any age. There is a film of this available, you can find it on Youtube or if you wish to own a copy, you can buy it from amazon.co.uk for £5.05, the film is pretty scary for younger children though (My little one won't watch it and she's 3) and films can never replace the magic a book has anyway. Out of 5 I am going to give this 10, it is a thoroughly enjoyable tale!

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                09.11.2012 15:37
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                An enchanting tale for children (and adults too!)

                Price: £6.99 (£4.19 on Amazon)

                Length: 32 pages

                I'm constantly looking out for different books for my 3 year old daughter and, although The Gruffalo's been on my radar for years (how could it not be!), I've avoided it until now. We have lots of other Julia Donaldson books, but I thought The Gruffalo might be a tad scary for a younger child. Now she's 3 though, I thought it was a good time to introduce her to him - and she loves the book.

                So what is a Gruffalo? Well didn't you know?! 'He has terrible tusks, and terrible claws, and terrible teeth in his terrible jaws." And, really, he's just a figment of a clever mouse's imagination. Or is he? For this story begins with a mouse taking a walk through a 'deep, dark wood' where he encounters a number of other critters (an owl, a snake and a fox) who want to eat him. However, he puts them off by telling them he's going to be meeting a fearsome creature - a Gruffalo - for lunch and, each time, he embellishes the details of this beast! I won't say much more - if you don't know they whole story, it's a nice surprise to read it with your child.

                For me, although the book's called The Gruffalo, the real star of the show is the mouse. He is super-cute and very smart. Personally, I find the Gruffalo just - ugly. I wouldn't be encouraged by all the merchandising spin-off to buy any toys relating specifically to him. Give me the rodent any day!

                As with all children's books, credit can't just go to the writer - there are pictures too! And as most parents will know. Axel Scheffler is a hugely talented illustrator. I sometimes wonder if certain books wouldn't do as well if it weren't for the fact a writer has been paired with a certain illustrator. In the case of Julia Donaldson though, her prose is simply delightful - and, together with Scheffler, pure magic pours out of the pages. There are many books that I'm ho-hum about reading (and yet others I dread reading - although I try to put on a good show with all of them for the sake of my daughter. After all, she's the main critic!). But I never get bored of Julia Donaldson's writing (nor of Scheffler's illustrations). I understand it's more difficult for would-be writers to get children's books published if they rhyme (something to do with them not translating, hence less chance to sell them in abroad). However, as a mum, I think these are often the best books to read. They teach children to love the flow and pace of language. There is a 'beat' to the story - something that almost borders on the musical. It is through rhyme, I think, that children can first discover a true love of language - how words interact with each other and how inflection can make a difference to meaning. Julia Donaldson gets this right every time. I'd go so far as to put her up there with the likes of Dr. Seuss.

                The story itself might take some explaining to a younger reader (there's a twist in it) but this is the sort of book that will grow with a child - and I don't doubt, when that child is an adult, this will be one of the childhood books that lives in their memory and still resonates with them.

                On a different - but related note - there is also an utterly enchanting short film of The Gruffalo. It's about 25 minutes long and the animation (and music) is magical. It 'stars' big-names such as Helena Bonham Carter, Rob Brydon and James Corden and brings the book to life without detracting from it in any way (you can find it on Youtube if you type in Gruffalo movie - it has Spanish subtitles for some reason (proving some rhyming books do still make it out into the wider world!)). And I think it's testament to the story that my husband and I often quote to each other, '... the mouse found a nut. And the nut was GOOD.' Read it and you'll know what I mean!

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                  25.06.2012 14:23
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                  A brilliant childrens tale that is detined to become timeless!

                  Julia Donaldson and Axel Schaffer are two extremely talented childrens authors and illustrators who have written a whole succession of very popular childrens books that will no doubt continue to entertain generation after generation to come! The Gruffalo is amongst their most popular creation and with good reason! This is a lovely tale with a neat little twist in the tale and a highly engaging narrative!

                  Told in the style of rhyme, the story follows one little mouse who takes a walk through the big, bad woods all alone. Along the way, he encounters a series of animals from a hungry fox through to an eager owl and a cunning snake....all of whom wish to invite him into their lairs to be eaten!

                  Luckily the mouse is not easily persuaded and manages to convince them all that he has a prior engagment...with The Gruffalo. When they press him for details, the mouse then goes on to describe The Gruffalo to each of the animals with varying descriptions but it is not until he reaches the end of the woods that he gets a big shock!!! The Gruffalo exists and is real and is just as determined to eat the mouse as the other animals were....

                  Thankfully, the mouse is a quick thinker and comes up with a plan and so leads The Gruffalo back through the woods to meet all the other animals with hilarious results!

                  There can be few people out there and cannot have heard of The Gruffalo! Over the last few years he has been exposed to maximum exposure with his likeness depicted on everything from cushions to bed linen to pencil cases with both an animated feature and numerous activity books released all based on his tale. But this original story is still the best and there is much here for adults and children to enjoy alike!

                  This really is as heart-warming as it is entertaining and is a lovely crafted tale with wonderful illustration! The Gruffalo has become such a worldwide, widespread phenomenon for a reason and that reason is because it really is THAT brilliant!

                  My daughter absolutely loves this and the only thing that comes even a close second to this is the follow-up tale, The Gruffalo's Child!

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                  17.03.2012 16:07
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                  Gruffalo Crumble......mmmmmmm

                  We bought this book a while ago from Amazon for £3.99 but I have to admit I didn't get round to reading it to our little one until I watched the DVD of the story, which I loved.

                  This book is the perfect encapsulation of the film, it is fun, beautifully animated, the words resonate beautifully and it is a perfect short story for little people with little attention spans.

                  The Story:

                  The story is about a mouse searching for nuts who comes across a number of predatory animals on his journey, in trying to save his skin he invents a mythical creature 'The Gruffalo' who he tells the animals he is going to meet, unfortunately, the old saying 'be careful what you wish for' is very true here and he is confronted by the hideous creature he has made up.

                  The Look of the book:

                  The animation is cool, linear and fun without being too perfect, the Gruffalo is fantastic, the woodland scenery is great, the mouse, fox, owl and snake are fine, although the snake does look a little ropey. I think the animation is fun and perfectly compliments the story.

                  The words:

                  Fantastic, there are only 18 pages with prose on and some only contain a couple of lines, but this is perfect story telling for young kids, the story is got across quickly, the 5 main characters allow parents to put on their silliest voices, the story has a fun ending which I think is quite inspirational for little ones and overall the rhyming couplets hold it all together, there is some repetition which is fantastic for little kids, but not so much as to make it boring.

                  The book looks great, it is hardback and means little one can bash it up as much as they want with no ill effects (Sometimes I actually have to put my little one to the side so I can finish reading it as I enjoy it so much, but i'm not sure that is the point of the book). It is a fantastic story with great animation and it really is a true childrens classic.

                  If you don't own it, i'd recommend buying this, and perhaps the Gruffalo's child, although i'll let you know how that book is once i've stopped reading this one.

                  A fantastic fun book for the whole family, a definite 5 out of 5.

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                    20.01.2012 09:51
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                    Would recommend 5/5

                    Every year at Christmas I buy my children a large selection of reading books. Having seen this book in many different book stores and some toys of The Gruffalo, I decided to to add this to my collection. Silly as it sounds I never read what a book is about before I buy it, I tend to go for an eye catching front cover and a good title.


                    The book is about a certure who has terrible tusks, and terrible claws, and terrible teeth in his terrible jaws. He has knobbly knees, and turned out toes, and a poisonous wart at the end of his nose. His eyes are orange, his tongue is black he has purple prickles all over his back? Yes if you haven't guessed it, I am describing The Grufallo. A made up story from a tiny little mouse with a great imagination, who manages to scare off a numerous amount of animals that see him as a potential small meal. As the mouse strolled through the deep dark wood, he seures his knowledge that The Gruffalo, does infact exist (in his head anyways) The Gruffalo has bad intentions to eat the mouse, but the clever little mouse manages to convince him that, it's him, the mouse thatis indeed the scariest creature in the woods and turns round to the Gruffalo that tells him that his favourate food is Gruffalo crumble. But don't worry there was no harm done to The Gruffalo in the making of this story book.


                    Written by Julia Donaldson and illustrator Axel Scheffer, the book has been a very successful collaboration between the two. Throughout the book the aurthor in very good deatil describles everything to the audience, who the mouse meets, what they look like, what they are doing, and where they are going. And the bonus of it all rhyming is great, I love a book that rhyms, myself and the children enjoy a book more, as it lets us join in together as a family while we read. The illistrations are colourful and from a childs port of view, very realistic. This book has been deemed a 'modern classic' and won several awards. You can now even be a member of The Gruffalo club, get your very own Gruffalo teddy, activity book, song and all sorts of different merchandise


                    My copy is published by Macmillan (1999) but I have seen it published in board book form by Campbell Books. The ISBN number is 1 4050 0518 1. I have also included the wedsite where you can go on to play games, read about The Gruffalo and join in with diffent activities with The Gruffalo gang. You can find it at: www.gruffalo.com I ordered my book from Amazon for £5.99 with FREE delivery, It arrived roughly 3 days after I ordered it. If you haven't got Amazon it is easy to set up and only takes a few mintutes. I have also names a few other great books that you may of heard of, that have been written by Julia Donaldson.

                    One Ted Falls Out of Bed
                    Rosie's Hat
                    Sharing a Shell
                    The Magic Paintbrush
                    Chocolate Mousse for Greedy Goose
                    Night Monkey Day Monkey
                    A Squash and a Squeeze
                    Monkey Puzzle
                    Room on The Broom
                    The Gruffalo's Child
                    The books tend to be rhyming and appeal to a wide age range of children.


                    When my youngest daughter aged four opened her present on christmas morning she started screaming with excitment. I asked her to calm down as I couldn't make out what she was saying. She was jumping with joy shouting "Oh Mummy, thank you so much I love The Gruffalo! Stephen reads me this at nursery" Stephen if you havent guessed is her teacher. I had no idea that this was her favourate book, so it was lovely to see that this was going to be a new experaince that I was going to share with her. My oldest daughter however had never read it before nor seen it at school, which I thought was starnge as if they have the book in burseries then why not schools? Any way, on Christmas night I bathed the children, and tucked them up into bed, and started to read the book. I needed of bothered as my four year old could re-write it word for word, although she cant actually read, she remembered it from memory. She joined in though out the book which was really lovely and my oldest just sat there and listened to the story. We all enjoyed the story, it described in deatil where the mouse was heading, who he bumped into, what they looked like, ect eact. If you were to lay in bed, close your eyes, and get someone to read the story to you, you would be able to have a very vivid picture in your head of what was happening in the story. We also liked how the booked rhymed, a very cleaver book able to get into your imagination without you realiseing and enjoying the story at the same time. Now that my oldest daughter can read for herself, this has turned into one of her favouate books, that she sits and reads before bed time to herself, we also enough reading it together as a family and joining in the words.


                    I would rate this book a five out of five and would urge you to read it to your child, i you haven''t already done so. If you dont want to buy the book remember they are FREE to borrow from the libuary, all you need is to sign up and take you card with you. I would also like to thank you for taking the time to read my review. I hope that it is of some use to you and your child or children enjoy the book as much as mines do.

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                      04.01.2012 23:26
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                      endearing story which kids will love.

                      If you have a child or work with children under the age of 6 there is a good chance that you have heard of the fabulous book that is The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson.

                      It was first published in 1999 and has become an iconic children's classic. It was written by Julia Donaldson - who has written over 150 books, many only available in school but 59 of them are available to buy in the shops. Before writing books for children, she was a busker which led her into singing and songwriting for children's TV programmes.

                      The story of the Gruffalo tells a story about a clever little mouse who '''took a stroll through the deep dark wood'' in search of food. Along his way he meets various characters - fox, owl and snake who all try to tempt him into going back with them for dinner. Of course he's the dinner and he knows that so politely declines their offers and tells them that he's meeting up with the Gruffalo. Of course they have no idea what a Gruffalo is and neither does mouse but amzingly when mouse comes face to face with him he's exactly as described with his ''knobbly knees and turned out toes, and a poisonous wart at the end of his nose''

                      So all of these characters get together and have a chat, decides that they don't beleive little mouse..... Little did they know! Eventually mouse and Gruffalo meet.... shock horror!! Mouse didn't see that one coming and less so that he was actually going to get eaten by one. However he's so clever that he gets Gruffy (as my daughter affectionatly calls him) to follow behind. Obviously fox, owl and snake see the Gruffalo and get very scared. Gruffalo is unable to work out that he's the scary one and beleives mouse that its him they are scared of so when mouse says that he wants Gruffalo crumble, quick as the wind, Grufffalo turned and fled.

                      A happy ending for all, no one is eaten by anyone else and mouse eventually finds a nut. And the nut looked good. Presumably he went on and ate it!

                      The book is illustrated by Axel Schleffler who does it beautifully. The simple illustrations go really well with and compliment the story perfectly.

                      The story is all written in rhyming repetative text so is easy to follow and easy to remember. Kids really find this type of writing appealing - my daughter certainly has! We started reading this when she was around 2 years old. Shes 5 now and can recite the whole book ... as can I and hubby! All of us in this house thouroughly enjoy this story and never tire of it. It is quite a long story for little ones but does manage to hold their attention long enough for it to be read.

                      The book can currently be bought from Amazon and other well known retailers for around £4. We have the slightly dearer hardback version - a wise choice as it has been read so many time in this house! This book is definately a keeper and one that hopefully she will pass on to her little one when shes old enough just like I did with my faraway tree books from when I was a kid!

                      The book has also been made into a short film and is available on DVD. As well as this if yo ulove the Gruffalo you might be interested in the growing array of accompanying merchandise available ranging from soft toys, colouring books and baking kits.

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                        18.09.2011 14:14
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                        An excellent read and a perfect gift for a young child.

                        I first came across this book in my work as a nursery nurse, when my son was born I knew The Gruffalo would be a story I purchased to read to him. We have had this book a good few months now and therefore I shall be reviewing it today.

                        "The Gruffalo" is a childrens book written by Julia Donaldson, I have found it available from various book stores as well as online at places such as Amazon ranging from £2.99 to around £5.99.

                        This story is basically about a small mouse who manages to fool the other woodland creatures into being fearful of him. It involves a few various woodland animals and a "Gruffalo" which is a strange beast with various funny additions, such as purple prickles on his back, wart on the end of his nose, without the aid of the pictures your mind could concoct a range of various creatures.

                        The language is good and suitable for a good few ranges but I feel is more suited to around 3-4+, my son has been listening to this since he was just around 2. At first he wasn't a fan but as time has went on and we have read it more and more he has become a great fan. The story is very entertaining for both child and parent. My son particularly loves it when I put on strange voices and be very dramatic with the descriptions of the beast known as "The Gruffalo". The story is a little long, definately one of the longest my son can handle but it isn't a mahjor problem and if it were a little too long then it wouldn't be a problem as it could be stopped and come back to a little later. The pictures are very clear and descriptive from a visual point and complement the story very well.

                        The thing that has struck me with this book in particular is that it has now branched out into soft toys, floor puzzles, DVD's and games have been produced in relation to this story giving a reader plenty of opportunity to do further activities in relation to this book. Personally I feel this is an excellent book for a large range of children, as they grow they will understand and enjoy it much more. A fantastic and very entertaining book that would make an excellent gift for a young child. A most definate 5 stars from me.

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                          06.06.2011 21:39

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                          A fantastic childrens book for all ages

                          This is the only book that I enjoy reading to my son again and again! From a very young age my baby has been happy to sit through the whole story without the need for buttons or furry bits. I have tried other "rhyming" books but this is the only one he will sit still for! It must be the combination of rhyming, great pictures and a lovely story. At 15 months old he has just started saying some words and "grufflo" is one of them. I really think that reading these kinds of stories help in their language skills and I have proof of that!
                          This is an extremely clever book which is suitable for very small babies to older children (my 10 year old nephew can recite all of it off by heart). And again the rhyming can help with language skills of older children, he is dyslexic and sometimes finds reading hard.
                          We haven't read many of Julia Donaldson's books and although I look forward to reading more I am afraid I don't think they will ever beat the Gruffalo!

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                          23.02.2011 01:11
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                          A beautiful story accompanied with wonderful illustrations

                          Julia Donaldson may not yet have the household name of a certain JK Rowling but this popular children's author has produced a simple yet endearing story. Published in 1999 and winner of the Smarties Book Award, The Gruffalo has sold almost four million copies in thirty one editions world wide. Published in over thirteen languages The Gruffalo has now become a key book on most children's bookcases, my childen included.

                          Essentially The Gruffalo is a tale of one rather clever little mouse who manages to evade the capture of three animals that live in the wood. A fox, an owl and a snake. By exploiting their naivety and using his cunning the mouse convinces the animals that there is a scary big monster called the Gruffalo that resides in the wood and each are his favourite food. In a twist of fate the mouse discovers that his fictional beast is real but also manages to escape his capture by tricking and out whitting him as well!

                          The Gruffalo is a magical story with a clear moral that manages to engage young children almost instantly. The story is simple, the rythmic and repetative rhyming of the text is easy for young children to understand and mimic. The story is set beautifully to the picture illustrations by Axel Scheffler who manages to perfectly capture the moment of the text on every single page. His illustrations help draw the child deeper into the story as they not only want to hear the story of the little mouse but also explore the woods where he lives. My children love the story and I love to read it, which is just as well because I all but know it off by heart! Julia Donaldson has produced some other fine work for children but this is one of the best and my personal favourites (and my children's!)

                          One Final Thought:
                          What I also love is that althought The Gruffalo has, over the last decade become more and more popular Julia Donaldson does not seem to have exploited the character in the same way that JK did with Harry Potter. An accompanying DVD now tells the story through the visual medium but it's release seemed very low key. Merchandise such as puzzles, games and soft toys related to the story are also on sale but you wont find them in every store on the high street. I wander if some of the magic and charm from this book would be lost if the author decided to sell The Gruffalo's soul and the character became a victim of mass marketing overkill, I hope not.

                          You May Also Be Interested In:
                          The Gruffalo has his own website with games and activities for young children and also some more beautiful illustrations and animation by Axel Scheffler. Children will love it

                          The book is available through most major retailers ranging from £2.99 on Ebay to £6.99 at Amazon

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                            11.02.2011 20:31
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                            "A mouse took a stroll through the deep dark wood..." sorry (it's in my head again!)

                            I worked in a Nursey for two years and was asked to read this book about 20 times a day (on an average day!) seriously!
                            Before long, I was reading the story from memory, due to its catchy rhythm and witty repetition. I found, that I absolubtly loved this book! Children love the simple storyline of a mouse walking through the wood, coming accross an fox, owl and a snake, each time pretending to be friends with a made up creature called "The Gruffalo." When the mouse does stumble accross the Gruffalo, it is fun for the children to see the mouse meet the characters for a second time, but amusing also for the adults who are reading the story. Cleverly, the mouse creates this creature, yet on the way back uses the same skill of deciept to trick the Gruffalo into pretending he is really scary. What the Gruffalo doesn't realise is that the animals are really scared of him! Loved by myself and all of the nursery children at my school, this is certainly a modern classic!
                            With excellent illustrations- an excellent book!

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                            28.10.2010 08:40
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                            Fab book

                            I have always had a deep love and reading, when I stumble across a good book, I just completely immerse myself in it and become totally absorbed in the story. This passion began when I was very young and I have very vivid memories of certain books from my childhood. Certain books just stand out from the rest when I think back and I have a particularly soft spot for the Hungry Caterpillar & Faraway Tree.

                            Now I have three gorgeous little monkeys of my own, I am determind that they too also develop a love of reading and therefore the bedtime story is given particular importance in our house. Now I read them a lot of different books, we make regular trips to the library to spice things up but to be honest some of them are pretty rubbish and only get one read. Some neither capture their imaginatation nor are a pleasure to read so I'm afraid we don't bother with them again.

                            Some books however instantly just strike a chord with their racing crazy little minds and we end up reading them over and over again. The Gruffalo is one of these books which as soon as I read it bot me and the children fell head over heels with.

                            It's the story of a brave little mouse who takes a walk through the deep dark woods in search of food. Along the way he encounters, a fox, a snake and an owl who all view the little mouse as potential lunch. To avoid being gobbled up the cunning little mouse describes a creature called a Gruffalo who's fantastic description will appeal to little little minds and ears. After avoiding being eaten the little Mouse comes face to face with an actual Gruffalo and the story describes this meeting.

                            Written by Julia Donaldson, The Gruffalo just works on every level. It is beautifully written and has a charm that doesn't diminish no matter how many times you have read it. Both my girls can recite the story by hear but they still love hearing it all the same. The book's illustrations have been done be Axel Scheffler and are everything you could hope for in providing a visual representation of what the reader will be imagining.

                            The Gruffalo is normally priced at £5.99 but if you hunt around I'm sure you find it cheaper. If you have small children - you need this fab book.

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