Puddle Hunters by Kirsty Murray
Illustrations by Karen Blair
Published by Allen & Unwin
Date: 25 July 2018
This beautifully written book takes us into the world of childhood, where we go on an adventure to plosh, splash, and spin. It is where exploration and discovery begin with rain and gumboots, knowing that outside somewhere there is squishy, squelchy mud and water. Kirsty Murray and Karen Blair have combined their talents to bring us this charming book, Puddle Hunters, that is packed full of enormous fun and imagination.
When the rain stops Ruby and Banjo find their boots and go on a hunt for puddles. They check the garden, under trees, and along the street, but it’s not until they come to the park that they find exactly what they are looking for.
This delightfully fun book experiments with language – using words such as Ploshes, Guck, and Buddles. There is subtle repetition when Banjo copies a lot of what his sister says, sometimes in his own way. The language is warm, clever and well placed.
‘No puddles there,’ Says Ruby. ‘No Buddles,’ says Banjo.
The illustrations are something special, they dance across and pop from the white pages; Mud, yellow and red boots, trees, the beautiful blue sky, Ruby and her mum playing. The looks of pure joy and excitement on Ruby, Banjo and Mamma’s faces add spirit and charm to the book.
I cannot quite put into words the level of joy I felt when I opened this book for the first time. I felt warm inside, I smiled a huge smile and I knew instantly that I wanted to share Puddle Hunters with children. It is something they can really relate to, and I am sure that many adults will have fond memories of jumping in puddles when they were children. It captures the essence of childhood and what it is like just to let go, get muddy and wet, splashing water everywhere. It’s about not worrying and getting dirty, it’s about using your imagination no matter what age you are.
Happy Book Birthday Kirsty and Karen…I’m off to buy gumboots so I can splash in puddles too.
Thank you Allen and Unwin for the opportunity to read and honestly review this book.