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Reviews for Fussy Freya

August 10, 2016
fussyfreya thumbnail

illustration Piet Grobler


“Fussy Freya (Frances Lincoln £11.99) is not for the squeamish: Katharine Quarmby’s rollicking verse tells how a three-year-old picky eater orders warthog and monkey, and learns a lesson when that is what granny serves. Piet Grobler’s watercolours have a sinister, angular exaggeration, like German expressionism. For children who like their food familiar and their rhymes revolting.” (Sunday Times, Best books for Easter, 2008)

“Piet Grobler’s brightly coloured illustrations are comic and eccentric in a way that is perfectly in keeping with the story… The characters are hilarious and unforgettable. The wavy layout of the text and the font are visually appealing too. All in all, this is a witty book that is fun to read. Each page has humour and entertainment value for children, though I love this book as much as my son does.” (

“What a joy of a picture book! I loved the illustrations, the fonts, the layout, the humour and the musicality of the text. A super book to read aloud with 2 to 7 year olds. The subliminal message is how Freya stopped being a fussy eater but the story line is simply a vehicle for an entertaining feast of children’s literature. Alliterative words, repetitive rhyming couplets, visual treats and more. I can hear the giggles now as the weekly menu is unravelled page by page. Every double page is packed so that I found something new each time I looked through it. In my experience this is a joy, not only for the small child but also for the adult sharing it and can make the difference between a genuinely rewarding bedtime experience and the ‘oh no not that one again’ kind of feeling on the part of the grown up. This can, so easily, be the kiss of death to expressive story sharing after a long hard day! If this is Katharine and Piet’s first collaboration, I hope they continue with original and exciting ideas for pre school children. Wonderful stuff.” (School Librarian)

“The story is written in a poetic way and is humourous and beautifully illustrated. The meals are carefully depicted, showing the importance of having vegetables and what could happen if children do not eat properly. And now when I use the threat of serving my children mashed monkey and rice when they become difficult at meal times, it yields wonderful results.”(


illustration: Piet Grobler

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