Hoot Owl, Master of Disguise by Sean Taylor & Jean Jullien

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Published by Walker Books, 2015.

Hoot Owl is hungry. It’s nighttime and he’s out hunting for his dinner. Luckily, he’s a master of disguise. Unfortunately, his disguises aren’t as effective as he’d like.

This is one of my favourite picture books ever. It is laugh out loud funny and stunningly illustrated. It has everything you’d want from a picture book: drama; suspense; humour; repetition; a catchy refrain; and beautiful, bold illustrations. I also love the richness of the language.

I swoop through the bleak blackness, like a wolf in the air.

Throughout the book, Sean Taylor makes wonderful use of similes and his descriptions of the darkness are poetic. It is a joy to read aloud.

The shadowy night stretches away forever…

Jean Jullien’s illustrative style is a treat: high contrast pages, saturated with colour and an incredibly expressive main character (so much is conveyed through Hoot Owl’s eyes).

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One of Hoot Owl’s doomed disguises, gloriously depicted by Jean Jullien.

This fabulous picture book is one to return to time and time again.

Rating: 💙💙💙💙💙

Suitable for children aged 2+

We originally reviewed Hoot Owl as Guardian family reviewers and we would like to thank Guardian Children’s Books for sending us a copy of the book. We won a second copy of Hoot Owl in a Toppsta giveaway and we would like to thank Walker Books for sending us the book (which we’ll be keeping at Granny and Grandad’s house to read when we visit).

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