My next review is of a children’s book called Benjy Bunn’s Busy Day. The series was created in 1973 by Bev Scott Prior when she decided to write a story for her children.
This story, however, follows Benjy Bunn as he attempts to help his mother around the house. He begins by trying to bake a cake but without the correct tools, Benjy Bunn’s day gets a whole lot busier.
He tries to make his mama treats for when she’s hungry, then goes up to tidy his room, makes his bed and ends with heading out the garden to weed his daddy’s garden. At the end of the story, his mummy finds Benjy Bunn out in the garden and shouts at him to come inside. But Benjy Bunn believes that he has been a good boy – which he has, so hopefully, he doesn’t get a telling off!
I really like that the book focuses on very real themes – a list of the ingredients that make a cake, that a cake is baked in the oven but with a warning that gas taps and heat shouldn’t be played around with, but of course, the strongest message being that the thoughtfulness of helping is so much more important than the mess created.
I like the use of bright colours, how Benjy Bunn looks, along with the style of writing – words such as “down” is written downwards and “up” appears higher than the rest of the text within the paragraph. It’s a great way for children to associate words to an action, such as up, down and roll. I also really enjoy the use of rhymes and the sounds of the different words.
The only thing I didn’t really like was the number of different fonts and sizes used throughout the book, and sometimes, the placement of the text on the page. I know it’s a personal preference and for a child, it makes for more interesting reading, but for me, the text is randomly placed.
I love this book – I love the message behind the story, that even though Benjy Bunn is probably making even more mess than there was before, his aim is to help his parents. I also really like the fact that this series has travelled down through the family – the illustrations have been created by the author’s grandchildren, but enjoyed by children everywhere.
Score – 4 out of 5