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I am a fan of Greenberg’s Hamlet; as I predicted in these pages earlier a few months ago, it was joint winner of this year’s CBCA award for Picture Book of the Year, and well-deserved too.

BOM! Went the Bear takes early readers into the heady world of onomatopoeia –the core of its appeal. 

Those embarked on acquiring language know words are for play.  Who of us can resist a sextet of xylophone-playing frogs? 

Reading this book aloud is a noisy business, as it should be.  It promotes language development in ways that are unobtrusive and inclusive and calls on us to join the cacophony, as do the characters –and that is the point of the exercise. 

We too find ourselves clapping and clanging and a-hollering, caught up in the excesses of pink elephants that stomp and giraffes that sing in a tremulous falsetto. 

Go on, try it.  I dare you.

Nicki Greenberg
Allen and Unwin, Australia

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