________________ CM . . . . Volume XX Number 28 . . . . March 21, 2014


Oh No Noah!

Heather Kellerhals-Stewart. Illustrated by Gwendolyn Monnet.
Campbell River, BC: Peregrin Publishing, 2013.
24 pp., pbk., $12.95.
ISBN 978-1-896402-14-7.

Kindergarten-grade 2 / Ages 5-7.

Review by Courtney Novotny.

**½ /4



"Oh no," says Noah.
"I'm not going to the dentist."

But if Noah has to go to the dentist, a funny thing happens. He grows sharp teeth and a huge mouth.

Noah the Crocodile springs open his jaws and - yikes - stinky breath! No dentist likes that. So the crocodile bird takes on the job and hops right inside. Peck...peck goes her beak, she's a living toothpick.

"Oh yes," says Noah. "My Crocodile loves having his teeth cleaned."

Oh No Noah! is about Noah, a little boy who uses his imagination to help him get through things he doesn't want to do - like going to the dentist, cleaning his room, or looking after his little sister. Whenever he has to do these things, his imagination takes over, and he turns into a crocodile, an anteater, a muskox or another animal to get through it. Consequently, he is able to turn an "Oh No" into an "Oh Yes" and get through each unpleasant experience.

internal art      The story jumps from concept to concept with each page and would work well for sharing with young children who are still learning to follow narrative arcs as each page is an episode in itself. Each page showcases a different scenario that is resolved through Noah's imagination as a coping mechanism.

      Oh No Noah! is a story that would be great to share with children going through similar experiences to engage and encourage their imagination. The repetitious nature of the episodes will involve children as they catch on to saying "Oh No" and "Oh Yes" along with Noah. While some of the concepts are a stretch, the story is redeemed through Kellerhals-Stewart's use of rare words, such as "mosquito's proboscis," which is an excellent tool for language development. As well, the illustrations are bright, colourful, and detailed and invite the reader to explore each page.

      A nonfiction component with descriptions of the animals mentioned in the story is included at the end of the book. This section also includes photographs of the animals which provide a nice visual comparison to the illustrations in the story. Children will enjoy gleaning facts to tell their siblings and friends, and this section provides further opportunity for shared reading and scaffolding.


Courtney Novotny is a Children, Teens, and Families Librarian at Calgary Public Library.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

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