Gorilla is a touching story about a girl called Hannah, who longs to spend time with her Dad but he is always too busy. They ‘never do anything together’, so Hannah is often alone and sad.
Hannah loves gorillas and all she wants is to see a real Gorilla at the zoo, but her father is too busy. She does get a gorilla for her birthday, but it was ‘just a toy’.
However, something magical happens in her bedroom and her toy turns into a real gorilla who takes Hannah on an enchanting adventure.
Why kids will love it
The gorilla takes Hannah out for a very special night – visiting the zoo, watching a movie, eating at a restaurant and dancing on the lawn. Many of these things many children would love to do themselves!
Children will relate to the clear and simple language in the book, and especially to the enchanting illustrations. Kids will get lost in the pictures – so life-like are they, with intricate detail and striking patterns (check out the kitchen and wall paper throughout the house). Everytime you read this book with your child, you will both notice something new!
Tips for parents
- Why does Hannah feel so alone? As seen at the beginning of the book, Hannah’s dad is very busy working all the time. But at the end of the book, he comes through and gives her exactly what she wanted all along.
- Find the patterns and shapes in the kitchen and on the wallpaper throughout the house.
- There are shadows on almost every page – discuss with your child what a shadow is, and see if they can pick all the shadows on the page.
- Notice the gorillas everywhere – from the cereal box in the kitchen, to the lampshade by Hannah’s bed.
- Food that the gorilla eats – ask your child to name them or point to each one.
- On a deeper note, you can discuss how the gorilla has all the time in the world for Hannah, and does everything that she asks – which is the opposite to her father.
There are many things to discuss and point out when reading this book with your child.
Anthony Browne is an award-winning British author and illustrator who always enjoyed drawing and intended to be a painter. He started work as a medical illustrator, and then designed greeting cards before starting to write and illustrate his own books. Anthony was fascinated by gorillas, which is why they feature in so many of his books.