I love it when I find a book that my daughter enjoys just as much as I do. Sometimes I’ll read a book that I think is really great and then we read it together, but she doesn’t enjoy it as much as I hoped. This wasn’t the case with Indigo Wilde and the Creatures at Jellybean Crescent. I was half-way through the book myself and she saw it on my bedside table and asked if we could read it. Like me, she was hooked straight away and kept asking for one more chapter.
Indigo Wilde lives at 47 Jellybean Crescent, with her little brother, Quigley, and an assortment of strange and magical creatures. Like all of the creatures at Jellybean Crescent, Indigo and Quigley were discovered by Bertram and Philomena Wilde in unknown lands, and adopted. Their parents often disappear off to known and unknown lands and send creatures back to Jellybean Crescent. A purrmaid called Fishkins, a llamacorn called Graham, two yetis called Olli and Umpf, and a couple of snortlephants, are all residents at number 47. The most recent arrival has just escaped from the crate that it was sent in and the note from their parents makes no sense. Indigo and Quigley must track down the new arrival before it, and the other creatures, destroy their house. Just when things couldn’t get any worse, the terrifying Madam Grey starts asking questions and demanding to see their parents. Can Indigo and Quigley capture the creature and get rid of Madam Grey in the process?
Indigo Wilde and the Creatures at Jellybean Crescent is wild and wonderful story, filled with amazing creatures, sillyness, and laughs galore. It is such a fun book to read aloud, as Pippa’s language is wonderful, there’s a large cast of characters (so heaps of voices that you can do), and it’s really funny. The book is bursting with Pippa’s bright illustrations, which add another layer of humour to the story. It is a beautifully produced hardback book that feels really special to hold and read.
It’s also a book about being different and unique. Each of the residents of number 47 are all a bit different, and didn’t fit in in their herd or flock because they were the wrong colour, size or shape. Number 47 becomes a sanctuary for them all, where they feel like they belong, and won’t be stared at or bullied. Indigo and Quigley are unique too. Indigo looks mostly human, apart from her horns and stripe of rainbow hair. Quigley was found by Bertram and Philomena, when he was a tiny baby, in a dragon’s nest halfway up an erupting volcano (he has the wings and tail of a dragon). The dragon’s roars had been so loud that Quigley is now deaf. Indigo and Quigley communicate with each other using sign language. I really enjoyed that aspect of the story.
I absolutely love Pippa Curnick’s illustrations! Her characters are bursting with personality, especially the weird and wonderful creatures. I don’t think I can pick a favourite character because they’re all so great. There are lots of little details to notice in the illustrations, from the pictures on the walls to the creatures lurking under the kitchen table. My daughter and I spent quite a while poring over the cross-section of the house, looking at the creatures in the different rooms. I really like the colour palette that Pippa has used throughout the book, as it really makes the characters leap off the pages.
I loved meeting Indigo Wilde and her family and I can’t wait to read the next book in the series. Indigo Wilde is already a firm favourite in our house and I know that the kids at my school will love her too. I already know that Indigo Wilde and the Creatures at Jellybean Crescent is a great read aloud, and it would be perfect for Years 1-4.