MacIVER, Juliette (text) Jenny Cooper (illus.) The Moose and the Goose Scholastic (NZ), 2014 unpaged NZ$19.50 pbk ISBN 9781775431503 SCIS 1640584
If you are something of a poet and you delight in the play of sounds and words, then here is an inspirational book. Using alliteration, assonance, rhythmic line and pun, the author invites young readers and their parents/teachers to try choral reading as a form of communication. We open the first double-page spread and see a moose jumping onto the rear of a train watched by his good friend Bruce (the bear) when later a goose too wants to jump aboard. We read ‘This is the train that boasts a caboose. This is the moose and his good friend Bruce, aboard the caboose drinking grapefruit juice.’ The problem is, is there enough room in a fairly full caboose and will they get on with each other when goose comes aboard with Moose and Bruce? The story and its telling have echoes of the nursery rhyme as genre whereby the poetic use of language is the name of the game. The illustrations heighten the sense of drama and are used effectively to induce humour. You can reasonably expect the rumbles of body movement as you read this out aloud, but might be surprised at the romantic ‘aaaaw’ as the story unfolds. Pure fun. Recommended.
reviewed by John McKenzie