Mr Grinling is a lighthouse keeper. Every day Mr Grinling tucks into a delicious lunch prepared by Mrs Grinling.
But Mr Grinling is not the only one who enjoys the tasty food, so Mrs Grinling has to think of a way to stop the greedy seagulls from stealing the lighthouse keeper's lunch.
I grew up with the Lighthouse Keeper books and when I saw some up for review I was very keen to see if they still held the same appeal as the did to me as a child. When The Lighthouse Keeper's Lunch arrived on my door step I couldn't wait to share it with the kids in my life. My 3 and a half year old niece was visiting when it arrived so we sat down to read it straight away. She was very interested and there was lots of talk about the story and all the pictures. During the afternoon she revisited the book a few times, each time spotting different things on the page.
The next day I took it in to work to share with the children I work with. Once again everyone was interested and there was a lot of chat about the story and the pictures. One wee girl started giggling whenever the seagulls came to get the lunch going 'ohh naughty birds, go away'. We also had a big discussion about taking other peoples things. Throughout the day the book was requested several times, when books are requested over and over I know they are always a hit.
I was so pleased that The lighthouse Keeper's lunch held the same appeal with children 30 years after it was first released. I love the illustrations in the book there is so many little details to them all. Reading the book brought back so many awesome memories from my own childhood.
This is the book that I grew up with as a primary-school kid. I remember reading this with my mum a lot during a period of time when my lunch was getting stolen. Because of this book, we found the answer to the lunch bullies and I also grew a great tolerance for hot sandwiches. I loved this book, because it was practical and relatable for me at the time.
Reading this with my own children, I framed the book in terms of my own childhood. I told them about my experience and how the book had helped me. That allowed us to talk about bullies as well and open the lines of communication about that stuff. We launched into the book, and both of my daughters were entranced with the story.
My toddler loved the pictures of Mrs Grinling cooking and baking. She tried to dip her fingers into the bowls and tried to munch the cakes and other yummy food right off the page. She loved all the pretty pictures of food. She also stroked the cat, Hamish a couple of times.
For my eldest, she was totally into the seagulls. She thought they were very naughty, but loved that they had their own speech bubbles and were saying funny things about the basket and food. It was a fun story, going through a problem and trying lots of different things to solve it. I liked that because it meant that we could also talk about solving problems and how sometimes the first thing you try doesn't work. But that doesn't mean you give up as well.
This book was as good as I remembered, and my kids really liked it. The drawings are quite impressionistic, and different to the sort of pictures we are use to seeing in books. I think that gave it a real point of difference that engaged my kids in other ways. I love exposing them to different art styles anyway, so that was an extra cool factor. I would buy this as a gift for any kid. If their parents grew up through the early eighties, even better as I am sure they would know the book themselves.
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