Picnic by John Burningham, published by Random House
Since the recent arrival of some warmer days, our daughter asks, every weekend, to go for a picnic. She loves picnics: the novelty of having lunch outside, nibbling small pieces of lots of things from little boxes and running around afterwards, probably too soon after eating.
This warm, sunny, breezy and delightful picturebook, by the two-time Kate Greenaway Medal winner John Burningham, has become a firm favourite in our house. Our toddler loves to join Boy and Girl as they leave their house on the hill, hamper in hand, in search of the perfect picnic spot.
Accompanied on their way by pig, sheep and duck, boy and girl have many challenges along the way, such as fleeing a hungry bull, coping with a gust of wind, chasing a ball down a grassy slope and retrieving a hat from the lake. Finally they find their idyll, and enjoy a delicious al fresco feast.
This book is not just a charming tale with beautiful illustration, which it is, but also great fun. Several times we are asked to help boy, girl and their luncheon partners to find items that they misplace along the way, with readers posed the question “Can you help to find it?”.
In the final scene, making the book a perfect choice as a bedtime read, a golden sunset lights their way home, and before long all tucked up in their own bed, with the final question: “Shall we find your bed?”