Some books just beg to be read out loud and the English translation of Swedish author David Sundin’s debut children’s book is one such read.
Whatever you do, do not read this book. It does not want to be read, it even says so in the title. If you dare to read this book all sorts of weird, strange, wonderful and wacky things might happen. Things that should never happen in a book, things that could lead to mischief and way too much fun. It is absolutely best if you put this book down, walk away and forget you ever saw it. Or is it…
You could be forgiven for not actually reading this book; ‘Put It Down’, ‘Quit’, and ‘Do Not Open’ are just some of the warnings that adorn the green and gold cover. Such warnings though are never going to deter curious young minds, in fact they will have quite the opposite effect with children keen to know what all the fuss is about. What awaits inside is brilliantly bonkers and has the book doing everything within its power to make the reader stop reading it, to put it down and to leave it in peace!
The beginning of the book is all very familiar, ‘Once upon a time, there was a child who couldn’t fall asleep’, but this is about the only bit that is in the slightest bit normal. Before long, the book transforms into a steering wheel, new words need to be read, text changes size, random animals appear for no apparent reason, singing needs to be done, improv is called for when words disappear from sentences, A’s turn into O’s ond couse oll monner of moyhem on o poge involving olligators…and much more.
Following in the same vein as B. J. Novak’s ‘The Book With No Pictures’, ‘The Book That Did Not Want To Be Read' is another fantastically funny and unique picture book that will leave children howling with laughter and adults with their tongues well and truly in a twist.
The whole thing is wonderfully imaginative and imaginatively wonderful, it leaves your brain feeling frazzled, confused and worn out by the end. Will a child be ready to fall asleep at the end? Doubtful. Such is the silliness of the story and the laughter that it will invoke, I would suggest that little minds will be very much awake. It is a purely joyous experience which is sure to become a favourite book for children to have read to them time and time again. Genius!
With huge thanks to Penguin Random House for the copy I received in exchange for an honest review.
Recommend for 4+.