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  • Writer's pictureNZ Booklovers

Goat on a Trampoline by Amy Harrop

Goat on a Trampoline is a hilarious new picture book by Amy Harrop.

Lily, a sassy goat, is easily bored and loves getting into mischief. She has already chewed a jandal, stolen a pav from the windowsill, and tossed a gumboot onto the roof of the shed. But she longs for an adventure, something more! When she spots a trampoline, she thinks to herself “I’ll have a go on that!”

With each bounce, Lily’s confidence grows. She jumps higher and higher! The farm animals come to admire her aerobatics and think she’s a star! This only encourages Lily to attempt ever more spectacular feats, a loop-de-loop, a half-twist jump, a backward somersault, and a corkscrew!

But all that admiration inevitably goes to her head. Lily gets cocky!

"Have you ever seen such a talented goat?" she cries.

Annoyed with her for being such a showoff, all the animals walk away. Then Lily has an accident. She needs her friends! If she eats humble pie, will they come back? They do and devise a clever way to work as a team to rescue her.

After that Lily, the goat realizes it is time to take a break from trampolining. That might the end of this story, but I suspect there could be a sequel judging by the look in Lily’s goaty eyes as she spots a tractor.

Little ones who live in the country will be familiar with the farm animals, for townies it will be a way to discover more about life in the paddocks. The thought of a goat on a trampoline might be a surprising idea for everyone! But sometimes truth is stranger than fiction. Amy Harrop was inspired to create this hilarious story when she drove past two goats lying on a trampoline in a paddock. (They could learn a few tricks from Lily.)

Preschoolers will enjoy the rhyming prose and love Ross Hamilton’s comical illustrations that complement this story so well, especially those of Lily the goat, her acrobatic antics, and the various expressions on her face. The look of utter sincerity on her face as she does her best to apologize to her friends, surrounded by a wreath of pōhutukawa flowers, is a classic!

There are also plenty of clues to be found to show that this book is set in New Zealand: the red band gumboots, a pav, a flax bush, kōwhai flowers, a kereru, and (eek!) even a wētā!

And there is a lesson to be learnt from this story, that showing off is not ok, it is better to be humble.

I think preschoolers will love this story and Lily’s whacky adventure is sure to make parents and grandparents laugh out loud too.

Reviewer: Lyn Potter

Bateman Books


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