EK Books – Up to Something reviewed by Georgie Donaghey

Up to Something by Katrina McKelvey and Kirrili Lonergan

Billy loves spending time with his Dad. He's heard Dad banging, drilling and sawing away in his shed many times. A visit to Fred's Hardware Store reveals the perfect opportunity for Billy and Dad to work together – The Big Race.

'Can we enter the race?'

'Of course, Billy! Let's go build something!'

This is music to Billy's ears, and he can't wait to get started. 'Imagine what we could build together.'

What better way for a father and son to bond than building a race car.

Dad soon puts Billy to work, giving him the responsibility of finding the right tools for the job. Dad gathers the timber, axles, wheels, paint and a few other bits and pieces to help bring their project together.

'You can pass me the tools while I put things together.' Dad says. 'You're still too young to use the tools, but you can be my special helper.'

Billy is crushed. Helper just won't do. He wants to be Dad's assistant. It sounds more important.

Dad agrees, but their ideas on what an assistant should do are two different things.

As Billy's sweeping up for Dad, he gets an idea of his own.

Billy gathers up wheels, wood and materials to build his own creation.

Applying what he has learned from watching Dad, Billy is careful not to break Dad's rule on using tools. Kirrili's clever illustrations demonstrate this perfectly.

The two mirror each other banging, sawing and drilling away in their own space as their carts begin to take shape.

At the end of a very busy day, Dad wonders what Billy has been up to all afternoon. 1…2…3… for the big reveal.

'Billy, imagine what we could build if we worked together.' Dad says.

Every parent struggles with allowing young ones to grow. After all, we are responsible for ensuring their safety, but sometimes that love and a parent's fear can be a suffocating. Billy is more capable than Dad realises, and he's determined to prove it. What happens at the end of the book will touch your heart.

These two amazing ladies smashed it out of the park on their Dandelions collaboration. Up to Something is the second offering from this talented duo and hopefully won't be the last.

Katrina McKelvey's heart-warming storytelling partnered with Kirrili's original and entertaining illustrations is the perfect combination for this story that touches on sharing, togetherness, acceptance and a parent/child bond.

Another bonus for teachers are the teaching notes.

Author: Katrina McKelvey 

Illustrator: Kirrili Lonergan

Publisher: EK Books

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Tuesday, 19 November 2019

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