Monday, August 19, 2013

Dirty Bertie - a book review

           "People say that life is the thing, but I prefer reading."
                                  ~Logan Pearsall Smith

Title:  Dirty Bertie
Author and Illustrator:  David Roberts

Just look at that cover.  Just look at that face.  Not particularly one that is endearing especially if what he is engaged in has anything to do with it.  But the reality do all sorts of things that are kind of disgusting and yukky, but we as parents go ahead and love them them unconditionally, and it is our job to teach them the rights and wrongs of life as we pass through it together.  

Bertie is a little guy who loves to explore, taste his world, copy-cat those around him and experience things that he bumps into.  He finds a lollipop on the ground and he picks it up and licks it.  He gets down beside his dog and together they eat the dog's food out of his bowl.  Yum! He scrounges around in the garden dirt picking up slugs and bugs to have as his friends and he imitates his cat who pees in the flower garden.  When his dog gives him a big sloppy kiss up the side of his face, he licks his dog back resulting in a very, very furry tongue.  He is a mischievous little boy without being bad.  He is very much a "Dennis the Menace" character, engaging in life but not knowing his engagement can be offensive to others.  

His family members, and those around him, are grossed out and he constantly hears, "No Bertie!"  "That's dirty Bertie!"  He manages to conquer all his bad habits except one.  If you study the cover of the book you might just be able to guess which one.  This book is very interactive and has many "yuks" and "bleughs" throughout.   It gives lots of opportunity for you to discuss proper manners and hygiene and what is acceptable to become a couth, respectable little citizen of our planet.  The illustrations are cartoonish, adorable and very, very expressive.  I love them and I love Bertie too (even tho' he needs a bit of a tweaking).  Your kids will laugh and think the wit and humour is delightful.  For some reason these kind of antics tickle their funny bones.  The illustrations and text bring this book alive and work perfectly together.  The paper book comes with a CD that has a great song that explains the story. It will have your kids singing along with a huge smile on their faces. 

Please don't be offended by the story and little Bertie.  Have fun, laugh and know that kids are kids and they need our expert advice to teach and correct them, and tell them what is acceptable behaviour in life.   Trust me,  kids will think this book is a real hoot!  I know the little kid in me did.  Enjoy!

About the author:

David Roberts was born in Liverpool. He always loved drawing from an early age and couldn’t wait to escape high school and go to art college. There he developed a keen interest in pottery and fashion and went on to study a degree in fashion design at Manchester Metropolitan University. After university he worked as a milliner and began to get work as a fashion illustrator but always felt his true calling was in children’s book illustration.

He signed up with Christine Isteed at Artist Partners in 1995 and has never looked back since. So after working as a shelf stacker, egg fryer, hair washer, film extra and coffee-maker David finally realised his dream of becoming a children’s book illustrator when his first book ‘Frankie Stein’s Robot’ written by Roy Apps was published in 1998. This book was shortlisted for the 'Mother Goose Award' for emerging illustrators.

Since then he has illustrated works by some fantastic authors such as Philip Ardagh, Daren King, Julia Donaldson, Jacqueline Wilson, Tom Baker and Chris Priestley. David considers himself privileged and lucky to be doing a job he loves. His most recent works include ‘Iggy Peck, Architect’ by Andrea Beaty, ‘The Troll’ by Julia Donaldson and ‘The Dunderheads’ by Paul Fleischman which was shortlisted for the 2010 Kate Greenaway Award.
David is also the creator of the ‘Dirty Bertie’ character about a little boy with bad habits such as picking his nose and trumping loudly!
David now lives in London.

Book Review Rating:     8  (Fantastic!)

Read on and read always!

Does the idea of this book gross you out?  Does it offend you?  Let me know. Leave me a comment.   Have an awesome day!  

Book is available on "Me Books" for minimal cost.  Check it out.  Tomorrow I am going to review "Pooh!  Is That You Bertie? " by the same
 author.  Brace yourself....get ready.... :) 

This is a free app from the App Store. Check it out for great books at a great price.  

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