Why Animals Talk, by Eric Pullin, illustrated by Chris Davis, ebook review

I was encouraged by other kids-on-Kindle enthusiasts to try out Eric Pullin’s Why series, so I purchased a .99 download.  I didn’t know what I was getting into, but I was happily surprised.  

Why Animals Don’t Talk is sixteen pages of versed rhyme slightly below my usual range of expertise.  This one’s a charming read-aloud for the youngest set.  Some challenging vocabulary includes words like: situation’s, naturally, managed, tongue and absurd, which signals to me that it’s intended more as a read-aloud than an independent reader.  And the perfect sing-song metre lends itself to an adult’s oration.  If I was to venture an independent reading level, I’d say a second grader could master it, perhaps with a help or two.

Every page of this story includes a full-color picture consisting of simply-drawn farm animals.  The characters do have very similar expressions every time they appear, but the simplicity works, and the animals are cute.  Mr. Pullin has carefully counted syllables so his story flows very nicely.  My one grievance is the non-rhyming couplet: “As time went by the animals saw, That Spot could not talk any more.”  Perhaps in softer brands of English the words sound more alike, but in my hard Yankee drawl, they come off very differently, right in the middle of the poem.

Overall, Why Animals Don’t Talk is a lovely, kid-friendly tale about why animals gave up their words.  It cries out for a soft couch, a warm lap, and a snuggly child.  And at .99, how can you go wrong?  Over the next few weeks, my family will be purchasing the other ebooks in the series (also available in print), which include:

Check out Eric’s Amazon author page. For paperback editions, visit his website.  Or for signed copies, contact him at eric.pullin@tiscali.co.uk.

***Since posting this review, Eric and I have been in contact.  I, in America, have been trying my darndest to get that couplet to sound like a rhyme; he, in England, has been putting on his best American accent trying to figure out how it wouldn’t!

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