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This week I was approved by NetGalley to get a sneaky peek at the new, picture book version of Michael Rosen’s classic poem, Chocolate Cake, replete with illustrations by Kevin Waldron.

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The book will be published on 24th August, 2017.

I love Michael Rosen’s work. I don’t really know anyone who doesn’t, to be honest. As a child I enjoyed reading his work myself. As an adult, teaching children about the sheer joy of reading, I used to look forward to sharing his books, particularly his poems.  Chocolate Cake and No Breathing In Class are two of my all time favourites to read and share. You can see them being performed on Michael’s YouTube channel, which is, in my mind the best way of sharing poems.

For sharing at bed time, or in class, or as part of a school library this new version is an absolute must. The illustrations by Kevin Waldron have a child-like glee to them that really help bring the poem off the page, in much the same way that performance does. The humour, the suspense, the excitement are all captured in the bright, bold pictures and really draw the reader in to the narrative.

I recommend this for all ages. It is deserving of the title classic, without making it seem dreary or only for an elite few. It is a classic because its themes are universal and it evokes all the emotions in the reader that the poem’s protagonist goes through himself. It is just lovely.

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