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The Grizzled Grist Does Not Exist by Juliette MacIver

It’s the class trip to Dismal Hills wilderness. The children aren’t worried about the legendary Grizzled Grist who lives here; they’re excited to show off their outdoor skills—foraging, climbing, trapping. No one’s impressed with Liam’s skill of hiding. But it turns out a hider can see what others think does not exist.

When the children and their frazzled teacher walk confidently into disaster, little Liam saves the day—a triumph for the quiet child no one notices.

From the world of That’s Not a Hippopotamus, also written by Juliette MacIver and illustrated by Sarah Davis, comes another exuberant rhyming picture book.

MacIver has once again written this in nearly-perfect rhythm and rhyme, making it a delight to read aloud. She includes repeated phrases so that little readers will love to read along too.

Following on from their first book, Davis includes glimpses of the gruesome grizzled grist throughout the book. This adds to the excitement and joy of young readers, you will have to flick back all the way to the beginning to double check.

Davis's softly coloured illustrations are full of action - with a great mix of characters that anyone who has ever spent time with children will recognise. The details within the drawings are incredible. From Ms Whisk's notes to gappy grins and dripping mushrooms, every page is a visual delight.

The end pages are also a delight - the front featuring a class photo (take note of which child can see the unidentified mystery creature) while the back features a Roald Dahl-esque labelled drawing of the grizzled grist.

The Grizzled Grist Does Not Exist is a fun and energetic read that will delight readers of all ages.

Reviewed by Rebekah Lyell Gecko Press


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