12 Nov 2019


ISBN: 9781910863572

Olly is a shy but funky Orangutan, who has an incredible voice and loves to sing but can't control his nerves enough to get any words out. After falling from his perch in his favourite tree, Olly is so embarrassed, he leaves his friends and seeks sanctuary in the jungle. But will Olly discover something on his adventures that means he's finally able to overcome his fears and do what he is born to do ... sing?
- Synopsis

Look up to the sky, gaze into the blue.
Imagine a jungle that's waiting for you.
- First Verse 

Yet right at that moment, Olly started to rhyme, was this his last action before the croc's crime?
Dreaming of nibbling a fine monkey toe, The sound made croc stop and she swayed to and fro!
- Memorable Moment

SOURCE ... Received with thanks from the author.


MY THOUGHTS ... A truly charming read, The Orangutan Who Sang may simply be a sweet story on the one hand and yet its one that offers unlimited opportunities for children to discuss how they might be feeling.

Its story captivating; the rhyming narrative a fun way to engage children and one that is guaranteed to have them joining in. 

Olly is an amazing and, with orangutans being all the rage at present, inspired character. Representing all children (big ones as well as small ones) who have ever felt scared or shy; his tale proof that each and everyone of us has a gift whether (like Olly) that be 'the singing and rhyming that makes your friend's grin' or something else. 

And as for the illustrations ... 

So much more than just humorous drawings, as with the narrative the illustrations provide a great opportunity for children to explore their feelings as they (for example) discuss the expressions on Olly's and the other characters (characters which by the way include humans in what I felt was a nice nod to the relationship between us and the animal kingdom) faces. 

I also liked that come the end of the book children were given the opportunity to 'Explore the Jungle!' by way of a short series of questions posed by the gorilla headmaster. Questions that had them discussing what they had just read/seen (how many toucans can you see around the jungle school? etc),  questions that had them exploring why things might be (why do you think Olly is sat on a branch all on his own? etc), questions that have them pondering on just how a character might be feeling (how do you think Olly feels at the end of the story? etc), questions that in turn will hopefully leave the way wide open for them to discuss just how THEY might be feeling. 

ABOUT THE SERIES ... It's so hard for parents to speak to the tiny people in their life about a specific topic which may be troubling them ... so this is the first in series designed for children (3-8) to have fun whilst subconsciously also addressing something that may be on their mind. These stories and illustrations are not only beautifully written but have a subtle moral message that will make hearts sing. Future titles include:

I'm A Horse Of Course ...
In a world that's grim and dark, can Poppet work out who she is really and why she's different? Perhaps a special friend will help her on the way and she can bring colour, magic and sparkle to the world.

The Shark Who Barked ...
Everyone knows that all sharks go "chomp" ... well that is except for this special shark. He goes 'woof'! Can he save his reef from the giant creatures who've come up from the deep and maybe have some giggles on the way?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR ... As a father trying to navigate the pitfalls of parenthood, James (Jay) Vincent wrote these books originally as some fun stories to help his daughter through her first years at school but they soon became a passion. As a child who had his fair share of trauma at school himself, it was only when they were read out loud to a pre school group did he realise he had a natural ability to write and bring magical worlds to life.

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Kelly said...

This sounds like a wonderful book overall, but I'm especially intrigued by the "Explore the Jungle" section you described.

Brian Joseph said...

This sounds like it is great for kids. Orangoutangs are cool.

Suko said...

Your review of this special book is lovely!

nightwingsraven said...

This sounds like a delightful,
inspiring and creative book.
And for my part, I have a soft
spot for Orangutans.
Thank you for your excellent

sherry fundin said...

as soon as i saw the title it put a smile on my face. this looks like a wonderful series
sherry @ fundinmental