"The bundle has a fluffy coat,
all patchy brown and white.
It has golden eyes and tiny horns,
and says MEEEHHHHH with all its might."
There is a new baby to care for on the farm. Milly is a mischievous goat who nibbles on clothes, gets through the fence, and leaps over gates. She wants to play, escape, and explore! Milly's antics will delight readers as she causes mayhem in her quest to find a fearless friend to have adventures with.
Included at the end of the story are several pages devoted to goat facts and strawberry growing, a recipe for strawberry jelly, and photos of the real Milly who inspired this book. The delightful illustrations are by Fifi Colston.
Reading with my children is a daily task which has been happening since they were very young. Our bookcase contents is always growing, so when I saw Nadia Lim (one of my favourite NZ chefs) had written a children's picture book I wanted to add this to the bookshelf. On the cover there is a notice stating that all the author proceeds go to the charities 'HUHA' and 'Garden to Table'
On the cover there is an adorable baby goat and a chicken, so one can assume that one of them is Mischievous Milly. I like that Nadia Lim has been inspired by her own pets, especially Milly, to write this story.
This book includes two pages of Nadia's personal photos of her, her family, and of course their pets. This story is written in the popular rhyming style, which is fun to read, and the children love enjoying to it. The illustrator has made the images look soft, but the colour is still vibrant enough to catch your attention.
Following Milly's various adventures, we get to see her escaping, nibbling on items that she shouldn't, and stealing fruit from the garden to eat. My personal favourite part was where Milly met Lil Jimmy and Billy, then watching the fun they all had together playing. The boys were happy though when Milly met Tilly and had someone to join her in being mischievous. Nadia has included some facts and recipes in the back of the book.
This is a very heartwarming story that is sure to put a smile on your children's faces. I recommend this to animal lovers and all young children; Mr. 9 thought it was a 'cute' book. I look forward to seeing if Nadia Lim writes more books about her other animals in the future.
There is something about baby animals that appeals to children. Show a group of youngsters a picture of a cute kitten, or a week-old puppy, or a fluffy chick and then stand back and smile at the chorus of melodic "awwww" from all the children. Even adults have been known to react like this, judging by the amount of pet stills and short videos that are uploaded to the internet daily. A baby goat, however, is a less common pet - but none the less immensely lovable, as Miss Five and Mr Four demonstrated. They had enjoyed the previous books about Marvellous Marvin, so were ready for more fun stories right from the first page.
Miss Five had seen kids at the zoo a few months previously; seeing the pictures of Milly immediately reminded her of the others. Mr Four thought a goat might be a great pet but soon realised how much work that would involve. He was not keen on getting his socks nibbled, and definitely did not want his strawberry patch pilfered - or anything else in the garden, for that matter. Like pet monkeys, goats are appealing creatures but they can be extremely naughty and will sample almost anything to see if it is edible. (I once babysat an older goat for a week. She was not a baby, but she still managed to eat some of the washing from the clothesline and then polish off the pegs for dessert!)
As a beginner reader, Miss Five found the rhyming structure of the text very helpful. She always tries to read along, anticipating some words, and able to actually sound out others when they are repeated enough. Once she had realised that "MEEEHHHHH" was not actually a word but a representation of the sound a goat makes, she and her brother were able to repeat it to each other whenever it occurred in the text.
The graphics are a delight, with cuteness overload apparent when the kid frolics through the daffodils with the lambs. Miss Five kept picking up the book and leafing through the pages to look at the illustrations one more time. Both children were interested in the dynamic between the kid and her new friends - rather like that between siblings who have different interests and abilities according to their ages.
As usual, Nadia Lim has included some fun facts and a recipe at the end of the book. This is a great learning tool; Mr Four already has his own strawberry patch (planted with the help of his Dad a few months ago) so he was thrilled to get some tips about looking after it. As for the recipe, the whole family is looking forward to trying that out once the fruit starts coming in. Also included are some photos of the real animals who inspired the story, all of which make it more immediate for the young readers.
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