King Flashypants

king flashypants

King Flashypants is like Monty Python for kids.

Now my son is a bit older I have been reading him longer books, or as he calls them ‘Chapter Books.’ The standard of young children’s fiction these days is a lot better than I remember as a child. Gone are all the twee stories about brothers and sisters or adventurous pets (well there are still some of those) and in come ones with jokes about farts, silly bad guys and lots of action. We have read the likes of Captain Underpants, Billy Bonkers and Dirty Bertie but the one that has really stood out is ‘King Flashypants and the Evil Emperor’. It is a little longer than the others but it really has some good humour in. I can only really liken it to Monty Python for kids. Silly sections where they need to stick their toes up their nose, peasants having a discussion about the pros and cons of revolting, the youngest seeing through the Evil Emperor’s plans but no-one listening to them, and no one wanting to go to a place on holiday because the name is too long to pronounce all add to what I could sum up as very British humour. Maybe it is because I am British that I get it, maybe it is because I find these things silly. All I know is that the main critic is my son and he loved it. He liked the previous books mentioned and would tell me about bits of the story and say, “that’s funny,” but with King Flashypants he was actually laughing. The drawings are great as well, I love the way they are annotated in places to give a bit more humour. I also like the fact Andy Riley laughs at the stereotypical by using it in such silly ways such as explaining the difference between King Edwin and Emperor Nurbison’s castles. I think I felt a connection between this work and Super Lizard, reading it almost made me feel like I had done something right with my series as I could see many of the jokes working in both books. Maybe then it was that more emotional connection, something that made me think that this was the sort of book I would write if writing for that age range, in fact I have one planned and if it is even half as good as ‘King Flashypants and the Evil Emperor’ I will be happy. Let’s move away from my works, you can look at them if you want but you really need to read ‘King Flashypants and the Evil Emperor’ because it shows how children’s literature should be done, both accessible to children and the adults who may read to them. If you are not sold yet just think of it this way, I am a 34-year-old man and I can’t wait to read the next one in the series! So all I have to end with is this, “what is a King without a crown?” As my son puts it, “just a normal person!”



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