Classic Rhymes for Kiwi Kids by Peter Millett and Scott Tulloch
Fred Dagg meets Mother Goose in this hilarious, Kiwi-fied version of popular children’s nursery rhymes. Award-winning author Peter Millett and illustrator Scott Tulloch have teamed up to create this clever read.
The Grand Old Duke of York becomes The Grand Old Knight Sir Ed, Auckland Bridge, not London Bridge, is falling, and of course, there’s lots of rugby references as the pair put a Kiwi spin on some classics.
Millett has written numerous children’s books over the year, including the Johnny Danger DIY Spy series, The Anzac Puppy and The Anzac Biscuit Man. Tulloch’s illustrations can be found in numerous books, including the NZCYA shortlisted I Am Not A Worm, and The Silly Goat Gruff. Together, the pair create a beautiful, hilarious book that begs to be read aloud together.
There are oodles of Kiwiana references, that even the youngest of readers will enjoy. The remastering of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star is such a favourite in our house, I’m not sure if we’ll be able to return to the original. While a couple of the rhymes are a little over-stretched, Twinkle Twinkle Southern Star is a wonderful ode to our tūrangawaewae, our place to stand, Aotearoa.
On the other hand, Have You Seen My Muffler Mate? is an absolute cracker of a retelling, it had the adults laughing out loud. It is so clever, and so obvious, and works so well. While that particular Kiwiana reference was above our preschoolers’ heads, the book really does have something to make readers of all ages smile.
Millett has managed to keep the magic of the original nursery rhymes, cleverly ensuring the rhyme and rhythm, and even emotion, remains. Tulloch’s illustrations are bright and cheery, each one perfectly matching the accompanying nursery rhyme.
I can see this book becoming a favourite gift this Christmas. But it’s popularity will last much longer, with many of the new rhymes becoming family favourites.
REVIEWER: Rebekah Fraser
TITLE: Classic Rhymes for Kiwi Kids
AUTHOR(S): Peter Millett
ILLUSTRATOR: Scott Tulloch