**A special thanks to the publishers for my ARC in exchange for an honest review**
Genre: Middle Grade, Graphic Novels
Publication Date: Mar 19, 2018
Publisher: First Second Books
My Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
What it’s about..
Francis the donkey is the best shoemaker in the village. He uses only the finest materials: coconut wood for the soles, goat’s wool for the insoles, and wild tiger grass for the uppers.
One day he receives a special order from his favorite singer: Miss Manatee, the queen of calypso. But he’s all out of tiger grass! To make the perfect pair of shoes, Francis must journey deep into the jungle . . . and that means leaving his village for the first time.
OMG..this book was SO adorable. It kinda reminded me of the Adventure Time characters and graphic novels.
I read this to 2 (of my 4) kids, and each of us had a different animal that we liked. My personal fav was Francis and Nigel (I have a thing for cute monkeys). My 12 year old loved Mrs. Manatee and my 6 year old liked Mrs. Manatee’s manager (the crocodile).
This was a really cute comic about Francis the shoemaker wanting to make the finest pair of shoes for the famous Mrs. Manatee. In order to create the best pair of shoes, he needs the finest materials he can find. However, things don’t go quite as planned.
Being from a cultural background, it was so nice to see the different fruits and plants being mentioned. A great adventure and eye-opener for those wanting to explore a world outside of apples, oranges and roses! 😜
My kids and I loved the narrative. It was a combination of storytelling and comic book style, making it easy for a younger reader to figure out what’s happening and who’s talking. It brought me back to the days of circa 1980 when I used to read Family Circus. There was such a diverse group of animals making it a really fun and engaging read. I was very surprised at how focused my 6 year old was. I was expecting him to zone out since it was 208 pages.
I’ve always cherished stories that teach morals, and this was one that teaches kids about team work doing the right thing.
We also enjoyed the facts and photos the author added at the end. It made this book that much more special!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sara Varon is a printmaker, illustrator, and children’s book author living in Brooklyn, New York.
You can find her on Facebook, Instagram, or visit her Etsy shop for things like pins, jewelry, and printed items. She is also available for school visits! For more info on this, please email.
Have you read any books by this author? Do you have a favourite exotic animal?