Anthropomorphism has been used as a story telling technique way back since Aesop wrote his fables. It has worked successfully for children’s authors from Beatrix Potter to Julia Donaldson. In the best stories it’s easy to forget that the characters are actually animals at all. Such is the case with Giraffe Problems. Edward the giraffe and Cyrus the tortoise practically leap off the page they are written with such personality.
Edward the giraffe is very unhappy with his neck. It’s too long and draws far too much attention from the other animals. He tries to hide it by covering up with neckties and scarves or camouflaging himself among the trees until sunset. But then he meets Cyrus the tortoise who has been admiring Edward’s impressive neck from afar. This little tortoise has his own body issues. His tiny, pathetic excuse for a neck! When Edward effortlessly picks a banana from the top of the tree, to give Cyrus his first taste of the sweet fruit, he is beyond impressed. They soon become firm friends and begin to appreciate the qualities of their own unique necks!
This is a witty, warm tale about self acceptance and how good friends can help us to appreciate our best qualities. Little P has completely fallen in love with Edward and Cyrus. They make her laugh out loud. She loves John’s conversational writing style and the gorgeous textured illustrations from Lane Smith. There is also a wonderful pull out page of Edward picking the banana from the tree to show off his impressive neck.
Giraffe Problems gets a big thumbs up from Little P and an impressive eight out of ten on the P-OMETER.
Giraffe Problems written by Jory John and illustrated by Lane Smith is published by Walker Books. ISBN: 978-1-4063-8316-4.