Stanley and Martha delight in finding the perfect presents for everyone, but they meet a big challenge when they decide to get a birthday gift for Len, the friendly ogre who has just moved in next door.
The usual presents just don’t seem to work, and this picture book wittily explores why not, as the children test options from ill-fitting clothes to a wobbly bicycle and a grounded hot air balloon. It will take a great idea and a lot of coordination to make Len’s big day truly special.
What Not to Give an Ogre for his Birthday is a charming, feel-good story about making others happy. What sets it apart is the creative sparkle of Will Hughes’ illustrations, which are slightly reminiscent of Quentin Blake’s. They are packed with character, with plenty to discover and chortle at in each one.
This is the first book in a new imprint from Little Door Books, aimed at launching the careers of gifted illustrators. They have certainly introduced a talent here.
What Not to Give an Ogre for his Birthday, by Will Hughes (Little Door Debuts)