Andy Griffiths (text), Andrew Daddo (text), Frances Watts (text), Sam Bowring (text), Randa Abdel-Fattah (text), James O’Loghlin (text), Judith Rossell (text), Tristan Bancks (text), Lollie Barr (text), Andrea Innocent (illus.), Laugh Your Head Off, Macmillan Australia, 1 Oct 2015, 228pp., $19.99 (hbk), ISBN 9781743537879
I was immediately drawn to this book for many reasons – it is a compilation of short stories, that are funny, that are by authors on the A list of Australian humour for kids, and I wasn’t disappointed. As I am a teacher librarian I had the perfect opportunity to try out the stories across the primary years and got the reaction I expected – sporadic outbursts of laughter and much moaning when I had to stop reading.
This book has something for everyone. Primary students will relate to everyday issues like annoying siblings, chores, practical jokes, anxiety, white lies, problem parents, revenge, terrible teachers, nits, Naplan and facing consequences. There are also fantastical talking tortoises, fairies and aliens thrown in. Students can find out what makes the authors laugh in a short bio section at the back. The comic illustrations and retro feel of the book design are also pleasing. The stories are perfect bite size morsels for classroom teachers to share and students will beg for more. Highly recommended.
Reviewed by Sharon Seymour