I love how children’s books can be totally irreverent. Mind you, it really peeves me when I find factual inaccuracies in children’s books and television programmes. Rabbits do not only eat carrots, nor cats milk (cows milk that is). The perpetuation of such erroneous information leads to a mass ignorance of the incorrect feeding of domestic animals with potentially devastating effects on future pets. It’s one thing to let a child believe a tiger eats cake and sandwiches and drinks tea, because the child is never likely to have responsibility for feeding a tiger without being adequately educated, but a kitten or rabbit?
Alright, my ranting done, unlike adult literature, children’s books don’t really need to mean anything. Their characters don’t have to grow up or do anything or say anything. The most important thing is that they inspire thought and imagination.
We picked up Christina Andres’ “Elephant in the Bathtub” from the library while on holiday in Singapore and it does just that. It’s delightfully pointless, silly and funny. It’s got lovely cartoonish drawings with enough detail to enthral a two and a half-year-old and it’s really short. I read this many times without sounding like a bear in Spring at the end.
Though if you really, really had to, and it was absolutely necessary to the reason for your picking up a book in the first place, you could possibly eke out something to learn in the precious few pages of this gem.
Firstly, it’s great fun to share, particularly a bathtub and particularly if some of your friends are huge.
Secondly, a simple bath can become a great adventure.
Thirdly, it’s vital for parents to have a drain on the floor of the family bathroom.
Now where’s my rubber ducky?