Did you know the patchwork elephant Elmer is 25 years old? We didn’t realise – in fact, truth be told I didn’t realise the Elmer books were available in longer form! Fortunately Andersen Press sent us a copy of Elmer and Elmer and the Monster, a new title in the series.
Elmer is 25 – and a firm favourite in our house – we have a lot of the books (and a toy) but in the hardback baby editions – so I was pleased to find the books are available for older readers too – especially when they do the reading themselves. (We already own David McKee’s ‘Not Now Bernard‘ – a favourite of ours) So when two books arrive in the post they’re promptly whisked away and read by my four and three quarter year old, who then refuses to tell me what they’re about afterwards, just saying “they’re good”!
So I asked her what the books were about. We know the original Elmer story, where he gets tired of being different and disguises himself as a grey elephant – until he realises he can’t change himself. The book has a lovely story behind it – about not changing how we are and accepting the way we are – and this version is a book H reads a lot. On her own. Without me. (which is so different to our baby books!)
Elmer and the Monster is a brand new Elmer story. When Elmer and his friends hear a loud roar in the jungle they are convinced it’s a monster. Elmer is the only one brave enough to see what it could be. So what is it then? You’ll have to read the book to find out.
Again, H took the book away, giggling in the corner as she read to herself, which was lovely. Both books are regularly read now – there’s a good mixture of pictures and words which are great for her reading level (Turquoise) – and as she heads into Year 1 at school I know these books will remain favourites – with David McKee’s illustrations so bright and colourful they’re visually appealing.
So Elmer is 25 and to celebrate the anniversary, there are activities all through the summer – Andersen Press are making available a limited signed version of the first Elmer book. There will be new Elmer products available at UK retail. Greenwich Park has an Elmer bench as part of National Literacy Trusts ‘Books About Town’ project. Look out for more at Andersen Press’s website.
Both books were sent to us for the purpose of review – all opinions are our own. This post contains affiliate links.