Hello, friends! Our book today is Gotcha! by Clotilde Perrin, translated by Daniel Hahn, an interactive hide-and-seek tale about finding the courage to face down monsters.
On oversized pages and through various interactive elements, readers follow a young child in a gray bear onesie as they flee from various fearsome fairytale beasties. First, they take refuge from a hairball at the house of the three little pigs, then from a stinkwart in the witch’s gingerbread house, and finally from a creeper (not Minecraft) in Sleeping Beauty’s castle. Realizing that the monsters will only keep chasing if they run and hide, the child decides to stand up to their ferocity, and may find that monsters aren’t nearly as tough as they appear.
Dark and wonderful. From the grotesque character design to the clever layout of the lift-the-flap elements, this is the kind of interactive book that kids will devour with gusto. Appropriately fantastical text, including tongue-twisting antiquated words like collywobbler and pestilential, plus speech-bubble dialogue from the fairytale characters make for quite a few entertaining gags, especially when combined with the incredibly detailed environments. Adults be forewarned, however: there are definitely some dark elements in this French import, including what appears to be the remains of two villains – the witch and the hairball – cooked up in kitchen ovens; this tale is definitely for slightly older bookworms. Other than that, the length was fine for a storytime, and JJ loved the lift-the-flaps and sight gags. Overall, a delightfully demented fairytale, and it’s Baby Bookworm approved.
(Note: A copy of this book was provided to The Baby Bookworm by a representative of the publisher in exchange for an honest review.)