Books by David Melling

SPLISH, SPLASH, SPLOSH! by David Melling
CHILDREN'S
Released: March 1, 2013

"The charm of the illustrations cannot redeem their poor interaction with the text. (Board book. 18 mos.-3)"
Ten ducklings brave a dip in a child's wading pool. Read full book review >
DON'T WORRY, DOUGLAS! by David Melling
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 2011

"Simple and sweet, with a winning streak of silly. (Picture book. 3-6) "
When bumbling Douglas wrecks a gift, what can he do? Read full book review >
HUGLESS DOUGLAS by David Melling
by David Melling, illustrated by David Melling, developed by Hachette UK
CHILDREN'S
Released: Aug. 18, 2011

"This app won't win any awards for technological innovation, but it offers enough warmth and educational value to justify the price. (iPad storybook app. 3-8)"
A cub searches for a much-needed bear hug. Read full book review >
HUGLESS DOUGLAS by David Melling
ANIMALS
Released: Sept. 1, 2010

A lovable brown bear needs a hug, but he doesn't know his own strength. One spring morning, young Douglas wakes from his hibernation and knows just what he needs. He wriggles out of his yellow pajamas, brushes his hair, puts on a scarf and sets out to get a hug. He remembers his best hugs were: big, so he tries a massive rock; tall, so he tries a tree; soft, so he tries a bush. He even scoops up a handful of sheep and goes after an owl. None of these provides a proper hug, and Douglas risks becoming a forest outcast. Finally, a helpful rabbit takes him by the paw, all around the forest and to a dark cave, where Douglas finds the perfect animal for a hug: his Mommy! Simultaneously goofy and heartwarming, a winning combination. Many of Melling's illustrations have rib-tickling touches, and a hilarious appendix shows the rabbit and a small flock of sheep demonstrating more than a dozen different hugs (the shy and unrequited hugs are particularly snort-inducing). (Picture book. 3-6)Read full book review >
THE SCALLYWAGS by David Melling
ANIMALS
Released: Feb. 1, 2007

Readers may barely notice the plot here for the glorious chaos in the pictures. Fed up at last when the Scallywags, a big and wildly rambunctious family of wolves, tumble in to ruin a group photo, a sedate community of animals gives them the cold shoulder. Happily, the ostracism turns out to be only temporary. At least mildly repentant, the Scallywags characteristically overdo efforts to clean up their act, and turn into obnoxious prigs—whereupon everyone is happy to see them revert to form as soon as the full moon appears. Melling keeps every figure busy in his populous rustic settings, rewarding close examination with hilarious glimpses of hyperactive wolves learning new, sometimes gross, uses for a toothbrush, clothing, cologne and other tokens of gentility in between scenes filled with flying food and bodies. Closing with a helter-skelter picnic and a messy gathering for another try at a photo, this quick and crazy woodland episode will have children howling for repeats. (Picture book. 6-8)Read full book review >
GENTLY BENTLEY by Ian Whybrow
CHILDREN'S
Released: July 1, 2005

Bentley may well be one of the cutest little cubs ever drawn. His chocolate-hued fur looks like touchable velvet. But he's all paws and a bit clumsy. Bentley can't even go lightly with his favorite squishy caterpillar. After one last mauling, the caterpillar finally explodes into little bits. Bentley's pals Squeaky, a mouse, and Bun, a rabbit, offer up advice and assistance. "Gently Bentley," they caution as a toy car falls apart and again when Bentley becomes tangled in a skipping rope. At last he finds an outlet for his exuberance and a way to have fun with a toy that can withstand his rough and tumble ways. Some might be warned that when things don't go his way, "Blow it!" is Bentley's oft repeated childish expletive. Melling's lively illustrations are bursting with color and action. This funny read is a good little lesson about appropriate behavior with certain objects as well as the nice reminder that innovation is the key to rich and harmonious play. (Picture book. 3-5)Read full book review >
COUNTDOWN TO BEDTIME by Mike Haines
ANIMALS
Released: May 1, 2001

A young porcupine and a raccoon get ready for bed in this rambunctious countdown tale. There are ten minutes to go before it's bedtime, but pals Bandit and Spike are too busy playing. While the species may be different, the bedtime routine (and attendant delaying tactics) will be familiar to young children as the pair have one last snack, brush their teeth, and do the obligatory check for monsters under the bed before lights out. Haines captures a youngster's remarkable ability to eke out the last morsels of fun to be had in those final minutes prior to sleep. Printed across the top of each page in large typeface is the number of minutes remaining; along the bottom is a question about Spike and Bandit's nighttime rituals. The accompanying illustration in the center of each page depicts the frisky pair engaged in a related activity and features anywhere from one large lift-the-flap to a myriad of little flaps revealing the duo's pre-sleep antics. Melling's brightly colored illustrations revel in the high-spirited hijinks that are part and parcel of tots toddling off to bed. If readers peer closely, they will find the appropriate numeral hidden in each illustration; a number-five-shaped sponge at bathtime, a bottle marked number two lurking in the medicine cabinet, etc. Filled with cheeky humor and engaging lift-the-flaps, this may not send little ones right off to dreamland, but they're bound to have buckets of fun in the process. (Picture book. 2-5)Read full book review >