A house of her own by Jenny Hughes

cover image

Ill. by Jonathan Bentley. Little Hare, 2014. ISBN 9781742974620
(Age: Preschool - Yr 2) Audrey is so much bigger than she was yesterday - so much bigger in fact that her dad's house is too small for her now. So she needs a house of her own. The dog kennel is too small; the garage is too big; and the tool shed too crowded. So her dad built her the most amazing house in a tree. It had a staircase with a bannister to slide down; a swinging bathtub for snorkelling; a cupboard, a bed and some chars for guests; even a stove for making cakes! It is a very high house, almost as high as the sky but Audrey is much bigger than she was yesterday. However, as dusk starts to fall and Dad heads down the staircase back to the warm, cosy house, Audrey begins to have second thoughts...
This is a charming story that celebrates the love between fathers and their daughters and captures that special relationship they have as well as the struggle encountered when crossing the bridge to independence as Audrey moves from confidence to a touch of anxiety as her 'tummy turns over' to relief as she realises she will always have a dad and a home no matter how big she is.
The beautiful, imaginative illustrations by Jonathan Bentley provide much to explore - every child is going to want a suspended bath to swing in - and the colour choices cleverly reflect Audrey's changing moods. Bright and bold to start with, softening as dusk creeps in and then the warm, welcoming lights of home at night. It would be a perfect kick-starter to a design and build unit as students put their imagination into gear to design their own treehouse!
Barbara Braxton