Wee Beasties: Touchy The Octopus Touches Everything (Ame Dyckman)

Hello, friends! Our book today is Wee Beasties: Touchy The Octopus Touches Everything, written by Ame Dyckman and illustrated by Alex G. Griffiths, third in one of our favorite series.

Much like his predecessors, Roary the lion and Huggy the python, Touchy the octopus has a quirky bad habit. Specifically, Touchy likes to use all eight of his tentacles to touch the things he loves, even when those things are delicate or dangerous. Like his friends before him, Touchy must learn the power of self-restraint – with the guidance of the helpful reader, naturally!

Let me tell you, the Wee Beasties have been a SLEEPER HIT in our house since we read Roary and Huggy, so Touchy was welcomed with open arms. The repetition-driven and interactive plot formula remains the same, letting this new friend slide in effortlessly with his peers. So same are the wonderfully colorful and dynamic illustrations, which have the added mania of Touchy’s jumble of arms extending off and on the page as they explore. One notable difference is the climatic interactive portion: instead of modeling the acceptable behavior by engaging with the character on the page, children must show restraint themselves by placing their hands behind their backs and NOT touching. It was a little tricky for JJ – who was so familiar with the interactive portion of the last two books – but well-done, especially as it introduces a new tool/strategy for encouraging self-control. The length is fine for all ages, and JJ was delighted – another Wee Beasties winner, and Baby Bookworm approved!

Huggy The Python Hugs Too Hard & Roary The Lion Roars Too Loud (Ame Dyckman)

Hello, friends! Today’s review is of two board books from the Wee Beasties series: Huggy The Python Hugs Too Hard and Roary The Lion Roars Too Loud, both written by Ame Dyckman and illustrated by Alex G. Griffiths.

Aiming to help little ones learn basic social skills, both books introduce adorable characters with lessons to learn. For instance, Huggy the python loves to hug the things he loves, but he finds that when he hugs things too tight (such as a balloon or an ice cream sundae), he can break or hurt them. Similarly, Roary the lion loves to let loose his big roar, more often than not startling his family members. In both cases, the reader is employed to help teach the character how to calmly interact, gently hugging a puppy and quietly wishing a baby “night-night.” And once the reader sets such a wonderful example, the characters learn how to gently and responsibly show their excitement.

We LOVED these! The lessons were well-imparted, necessary, and used the interactive elements in both fun and educational ways. The characters and illustrations were absolutely charming, and the friendly conversational text made reading them aloud a joy. The lengths were perfect, and JJ had an absolute blast with them, especially the interactive pages and the art. Even the clever twist at the end of Roary was perfect. I hope to see more of this series very soon, because these two are emphatically Baby Bookworm approved!

(Note: Copies of these books were provided to The Baby Bookworm by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)