Yours Sincerely, Giraffe is the delightful and charming story about a bored giraffe who is looking for a friend.
Giraffe spends his days wandering the sun filled African savanna and eating leaves from the highest trees, but he is bored! His days are very repetitive and he really wants a friend. One day the is a change in his world, a sign offering mail deliveries anywhere is the world! This starts him wondering what animals are over the horizon he can see in the distance but never visited. He decides he will write a letter and find out.
The next morning, he writes his letter. He then finds Pelican, who is also very bored, and instructs him to deliver the letter to the first animal he sees over the horizon. Pelican is overjoyed as Giraffe is his first customer and agrees. The horizon can’t be far, can it? It is a lot further than either imagined and takes a long to get there. The letter finally reaches Penguin, with the help of mail carrier Seal.
This is the start of Giraffe and Penguin becoming pen pals and friends, and of course relieving the boredom. But as Giraffe doesn’t know what a penguin looks like he tries to figure it out from Penguin’s description with the aim of dressing like him and going to visit.
Of course, as Giraffe hasn’t any idea of what a penguin looks like he inevitability misunderstands and gets it wrong.
Overall, this is a delightful story that will leave children with a smile on their face. Giraffe trying dress like an animal he has never seen before is fun, how can you dress like something you have never seen from a basic description in a written letter? It also sees Penguin asking questions like “What is a neck?” and “Why doesn’t he have one?” As I was reading the book with 4 year old twins it lead to them talking about what penguins and giraffes looked like and then pointing out their own neck and other body parts (which for some reason led to them singing Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes).
This book has a great story and shows the importance of communication but also how you can interpret the written word in your own way leading to misunderstandings. It also shows how important hard work is, if Penguin and Seal hadn’t worked so hard then Giraffe would never have met Penguin.
And to top it off it teaches children about friendships and how you can be friends with someone even if they are from a different place or culture.
It has also features simple line drawings, including the letters between the pen pals, illustrated by Jun Takabatake.
An excellent story of friendships, hard work, misunderstandings and taking the time to learn about others that will leave a smile on your face.
RRP: £6.99 (paperback)
Disclosure: I was provided with a free copy of this book for the purposes of writing a honest and impartial review. All opinions expressed are my own.