This is a very amusing story based on how small children often twist words that they have misheard.
Papa Chicken explains that every good story should have an element of surprise, not an elephant of surprise. To prove the point, Chicken must find the element of surprise in three stories.
The first story read is The Ugly Duckling. The final scene is read with an elephant inserted as the element of surprise that is usually experienced.
Papa Chicken is sure that there will not be an elephant in the next book chosen but when the Prince climbs the tower to Rapunzel, an elephant unexpectantly appears in the next scene.
The third story chosen is The Little Mermaid and, once again, there is the elephant of surprise in pride of place. The nature of Chicken is then shown as Papa tries to tell an elephant-less story and is high-jacked.
The clever play on words is beautifully illustrated with old worldy colours and a depth of picture similar to an antique story book. There is a combination of correct wording in typed text and childlike handwritten labels in talking bubbles and illustrations.
This is a delightful book that children old enough to read with assistance will find laughter in. I recommend it for children from 6 and above.
Reviewed by Leanne Caune
Rating out of 10: 8
Distributed by: Walker Books
Released: October 2018