Picture Book Nook: Where is Fred? by Edward Hardy

‘Hey, you! Yes, you reading this! I’m Gerald the crow and I’m looking for a lovely, fluffy white caterpillar called Fred. Have you seen him? I want him for my lunch! You haven’t? Are you sure? Then…Where is Fred?’

Fred is a lovely, fluffy, white caterpillar who loves games, especially Hide-and-Seek.  He’s really good at Hide-and-Seek because he can hide himself very well.  Apart from hiding, he spends most of his day munching on leaves.  Then one day he looks up to find a beady-eyed black crow, called Gerald, staring down at him hungrily.  Fred must do what he does best to escape Gerald’s hungry beak.

Where is Fred? is a fun picture book about a very smart caterpillar and a crow who’s ‘not the cleverest of birds.’  Children will get hooked right from the very first page when they meet the ‘lovely, fluffy white caterpillar called Fred’ and they get a chance to stroke him.  They’ll want to find Fred on each page and will get great satisfaction out of Fred outsmarting silly old Gerald.  Edward Hardy’s story is funny and action-packed, with just the right amount of repetition that children will be able to join in with the story.  Although you’re rooting for Fred, you also feel kind of sorry for Gerald because he keeps getting outsmarted.  Ali Pye’s illustrations were what made this picture book stand out for me.  She’s made Fred look very cute and fluffy and made Gerald look angry and a little bit crazy.  Each page is full of colour and there is lots for children to look at as you’re reading the story.  Ali very skilfully hides Fred on each page and it’s only his beady eyes that give him away.  I also really like the design of the book as different fonts and text sizes have been used, while still making it easy to read.  Where is Fred? will leave children laughing and is a great read-aloud for children who like a longer story.

5 out of 5 stars

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