Duck & Penguin Do Not Like Sleepovers (Julia Woolf)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Duck & Penguin Do Not Like Sleepovers by Julia Woolf, the return to the reluctant playmates from Duck & Penguin Are Not Friends.

Bestest pals Betty and Maud are back… along with their beleaguered stuffies (Duck and Penguin, respectively). While Betty and Maud adore each other’s company, Duck and Penguin are no closer than they were in the first title – to be blunt, they despise one another. So as Betty and Maud prepare for a camping sleepover by setting up their tent, cozying into pajamas, and sipping fizzy sodas, Duck and Penguin are busy silently fighting, scowling, and sabotaging each other. Yet when the girls need to run inside for a potty break – leaving the toys behind – the noises and darkness of the night cause them to cuddle a little closer, despite their differences.

Silly fun. Once again, this unique tale of anti-friendship draws a great deal of comedy from the animosity between the titular characters. The matter-of-fact narration, infectiously joyful voices of the girls, and expressive illustrations of the toys work together perfectly to sell Duck and Penguin’s predicament, as well as the scary (but not too scary) nighttime elements that help bring them together – including a genuinely hilarious final spread. This one is less a lesson in unlikely friendship and more a straightforward comedy, and it works all the better for it; Duck and Penguin’s reconciliation is hinted at on the endpapers, but isn’t included in the narrative. The length is perfect, JJ was giggling all the way through, and this was just a lovely, entertaining read – Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)

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