A boisterous bunny has her first gymnastics class in this debut picture book from author-illustrator Thompson.
Tilley Tumble is the “busiest, bounciest and bendiest little bunny in Barley Burrow.” Although her mother is dismayed by her constant activity—and the messes that she leaves in her wake—Tilley practices her gymnastics constantly, and when a new gym opens, she’s excited to try it out. She meets Miss Hoppa, the coach, who promises her that her ears are not too big, that her feet are just right, and that if she’s too scared to jump into the foam pit, she can just try it later. Tilley’s worries will feel authentic to youngsters trying new physical activities, and Miss Hoppa’s encouragement will effectively soothe those concerns. The digital illustrations—filled with pink and purple hues, even on tree leaves—combine human and bunny body mechanics to create believable, identifiable gymnastics poses. (Young gymnasts may be alternately envious of Tilley’s ears and glad that they don’t have to deal with them.) Thompson’s excellent, sporadic alliteration makes the prose fun to read aloud, and only a few complicated terms (“arabesque,” “cartwheeled”) may trip up newly independent readers.
An encouraging tale of a much-loved physical activity with a charming protagonist.