A new Gruffalo book please
Having two small children means I have been immersed in the world of Julia Donaldson for some time now. Her and Axel Scheffler have produced some of the best children’s books around and a night rarely goes by without a Julia Donaldson book being included in the bedtime story selection. The big classic, as far as Donaldson and Scheffler books go, is The Gruffalo. What I like is that it really is a classic, some books get called classics and when you read them they are not as good as stated or have become dated. The Gruffalo is as good now as when it was written in 1999. The sequel, The Gruffalo’s Child written in 2004, is equally a masterpiece of rhyming and imagination. The success of the Gruffalo has gone from strength to strength with TV animations, activity books, plays, woodland trails and a, soon to be released, cook book. Whilst these are great they do sometimes appear to be cash ins. My son has some of these Gruffalo extras including a pair of Gruffalo wellies and Gruffalo shorts. Most recently we have learnt about the Gruffalo song and have been singing that in the car. Now whilst these are great (my son knows the words to the story and can join in with the rhymes when he sees something with a Gruffalo on) what I would really like to see is Donaldson and Scheffler reunited to create a new Gruffalo story. Their last book was in 2014 so they are still working together. I understand that we do not want Gruffalo stories churned out one after the other as they lose the magic after a while but this year is the 15th anniversary of the original and one more book would be nice, it does not even need to follow the pattern of walking through the woods like the other two books do. In terms of content we have had a book about the Gruffalo and one about his child. Anatomy and biology dictate that he must have had a partner to have child with so maybe the next book could be The Gruffalo’s Wife. It could be about them getting ready to get married like The Scarecrow’s Wedding or could be the Gruffalo and his child looking for their wife/mum in the deep dark wood and coming across the fox, the owl and the snake, maybe they could find the Gruffalo’s Wife having a tea party with the big bad mouse. Just some silly thoughts there. Anyway, I for one would be very excited by another book in the Gruffalo series (also it would have a lot marketing potential so would not be a bad thing for Donaldson and Scheffler, although I doubt they need more exposure, they are pretty big in children’s literature as it is). Here’s hoping we see the Gruffalo in a new adventure soon.