Review Blog

Apr 04 2019

The astro naughty naughty Baddies by Mark Sperring

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Illus. by David Tazzyman. Bloomsbury, 2019. ISBN: 9781408897782.
(Ages: 5-9) Themes: Humorous Stories. This is a follow-up to 2017's The naughty naughty Baddies, in which four diabolically dreadful children attempt to steal all the spots off the Queen's Little Doggy Woof-Woof. In this instalment the Baddies are about to blast off to the moon. Why? To capture some aliens of course and win a toy-tastic reward of course. But taking off into space and bringing back aliens isn't naughty, is it? Why not pretend to be aliens and HOODWINK the President into giving them the reward?!
Mark Sperring is probably best known for his Dino series (Dino-Mummy, Dino-Daddy, etc.) and David Tazzyman for his illustrative work in the bestselling You can't take an elephant on the bus. Tazzyman's cartoonish, scribbly illustrations work perfectly with this madcap tale featuring four intelligent but horrid children and humorous details abound within each picture. The text reads incredibly well aloud and has perfect pace, rhythm and suggested expression ('In three clicks of a knitting needle the DASTARDLY plan was underway and, at EXACTLY four minutes past snack time, the Naughty, Naughty Baddies landed in the President's bedroom'). This is silly and fun with an uncomplicated storyline and school-age children will love it. Adults might not want to be encouraging naughty behaviour but their behaviour is ridiculous rather than naughty (and they don't actually get away with the reward) and the President is also a laughable person, far too easily tricked by these children and their makeshift alien costumes!
Nicole Nelson

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