I don't want to be quiet by Laura Ellen Anderson
Bloomsbury, 2020. ISBN: 9781526602442. 32pp.
(Age: 3+) Highly recommended. The heroine of this uproariously funny tale loves to be noisy. She chats, laughs and claps in school despite being asked by the teacher to listen. She stomps down stairs, drums with the spoons and hums when Mum has asked for quiet. She cannot help herself: clanging, stomping, slurping, crunching, splashing and even burping. She and the class go into the library where everyone else sits down to read a book, but she interrupts, complaining it is too quiet. When everyone tells her that she must be quiet, and the page has a row of 'shh' across the top, she takes down a book like the others and finds herself spellbound.
In rhyming lines, the story of the girl's change of heart unfolds. Reading out loud would be thrilling for the audience, involved in the tale of this too loud girl and the words which describe the noises she makes. Kids will love the rhymes, predicting the rhyming word at the end of each pair of lines, deciding what noise will go with each word, standing up to make the stomping or clapping or slurping or clanging words along with the reader.
And the illustrations too will entreat younger readers to look at the young girl, surrounded by illustrative techniques which show noise.
No child can be quiet when her mouth is wide open, or sit surrounded by exclamation marks, or jumping down stairs, or sploshing through puddles: each page reflects the noise of the child, just as the last few pages reflect the quiet time as she reads a book. A playful list of rhyming words, enhanced with wonderfully apt illustrations will make this a favourite read aloud and join in book. Themes: Quietness, Noise, Reading, Read aloud, Family, Verse.