The Big Walloos’ Adventure by Anuska Allepuz

The Big Walloos’ Adventure by Anuska Allepuz. Candlewick Press, c2020, 2021. 9781536215311

Rating: 1- 5 (5 is excellent or a Starred review) 4

Format:  Hardcover

Genre:  Picture book

What did you like about the book?   The Walloo family, resembling a cross between a mouse and a fox, live on a rocky island beside a lake.   Each family member has a favorite activity.  Little Walloo loves to take care of little plants, Spotty Walloo loves to make salad and soups, Big Walloo loves to build boats and Old Walloo loves to tell stories. They all love to go on trips, so one day they set out in one of Big Walloo’s boats and land on a tropical island.  As the family begins to cut down the plants and gather seeds, the island begins to change.  It becomes hotter and one day it begins to move.  The Walloos realize that the island they are on is actually a hippo.  The Walloos have taken away the plants that gave the hippo shade.  Little Walloo has an idea.  They use the leaves they collected to make an umbrella for Hippo and then Little Walloo and Old Walloo spread the seeds that they have collected.  Hippo begins to feel better and soon they are joined by even more hippos.  The story is a subtle lesson on caring for living creatures and protecting the ecosystem.  The mixed media illustrations are full of color and complement the environmental tale. 

Anything you didn’t like about it? No 

To whom would you recommend this book?  This would pair well with other environmentally-minded picture books including The Last Tree by Emily Haworth-Booth and The Trouble with Dragons by Deb Gliori. 

Who should buy this book?  Public libraries and elementary school libraries

Where would you shelve it? Picture books

Should we (librarians/readers) put this at the top of our “to read” piles?  No

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City:  Catherine Coyne, Mansfield Public Library, Mansfield, MA

Date of review:   September 19, 2021

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