Title: Not Cute
Author & Illustrator: Philip Bunting
Published: July 2020
I received a copy of Not Cute from the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Quokka did not like being cute. Not one bit. The romping, stomping, chomping tale of one stubbornly adorable marsupial.
Continuing my recent trend in reading and reviewing Philip Bunting’s picturebooks, I requested Not Cute because it seemed, well, cute.
It is, in fact, very cute and entertaining and just a little bit irreverent (especially the ending!). It’s the story of Quokka, who’s decided that it no longer likes being referred to as ‘cute’ and so sets up to show all the other animals just how dangerous, scary and deadly it can be through a series of dress-up costumes. That is, until it crosses paths with the wrong animal!
I love that this story includes, at the very end, an Aesop quote: “The stubborn listen to nobody’s advice and become a victim of their own delusions.” It’s very indicative of this story. There are some very strong teaching points to be drawn from the moral of this story, both for classroom teachers and parents sharing it with their children. (Of course, it’s okay to just read it and have a laugh, too!)
As always, Bunting’s illustration style is just exquisite to look at. He illustrations are immediately recognisable and very engaging to explore when reading the book. I love the design of the endpapers, which give you a real big clue into the story, and connect from front page to the end page and just draws the story to a close.
I very much look forward to seeing what Bunting releases next and I’ll definitely be lining up to read it as soon as possible.