Book Review | PLOP falls the Mango!

Author: Sarvendra Vikram
Illustrator: Eshita Munshi

Another gem from Pratham Publications, this translated story surrounds a mango that falls from a tree and the reactions of animals after it lands on the ground.

Beginning with a pigeon, a rabbit, and a squirrel, who are playing when the mango falls from the tree, to the seed of the mango lying on the ground after a cuckoo comes and eats it up, the author has woven the story sequentially.

Each page contains a surprise element as a different set of animals approach the mango seed – a curious rat, an owl, a monkey, a nightingale, a duck, goat, an onlooker crow, a spider, mongoose, and a lion and a lioness that walk past the mango seed. Rain and thunder follows, making the elephant trumpet loudly and shake a tree full of parrots, and the hen pecking at the seed. After the rains stop, the seed blossoms into a tiny plant. The rabbit, pigeon and squirrel watch the tiny plant grow from the seed.

Eshita Munshi’s illustrations visually stimulate children’s imagination of nature, rains, and reactions of various animals to the mango seed and the tiny plant which grows from it after the rains. The author has managed to even evoke reactions of the plant upon seeing the goat approach it as well as the reaction of the goat upon seeing the lion and the lioness returning from the pond.

One of the specialties of Pratham books is that they pose questions to children at the end of the book and leave the story open ended “what do you think happened next?”

This Level 2 reader succeeds in stimulating imagination and enhancing vocabulary too. A great book for toddlers to read aloud!

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Book Review | My Juggling Granny

Authors: Mala Kumar & Manisha Chaudhry
Illustrator: Niloufer Wadia

Grandmothers are extremely sweet and caring. I am sure you will agree that each granny is unique in her own way. All of us have sweet memories with our respective grandmothers and all vacations spent with her.

Meet this lovely grandma who has a strange fetish or hobby. She loves juggling anything and everything wherever she is – be it the kitchen, office, market or grandpa’s things! Everyone around are exasperated and frazzled with her strange fetish.

Inside the kitchen, she juggles pots, pans, vegetables, fruits etc. Once she even tossed grandpa’s watch, pen, spectacles, cap and even his umbrella in the air and juggled. Poor grandpa had a fit seeing his things tossed up in the air. He threw up his hands and became angry.

One day, she went to the market and to the fruit seller’s dismay, she tossed his mangoes in the air and one went flying to the ground and became pulp. Onlookers were scared as she kept tossing one thing after another and they dared not stop her. Grandpa looked flustered and embarrassed. In an office, one day, granny started tossing pens, books and stationary in the air, much to the dismay of the employees working there.

Finally, one day, grandpa gifted her a whole basket of colourful balls. Grandma was really happy with them and grandpa watched her in delight as she started juggling them in the air gleefully. That night he slept fitfully as granny kept juggling the balls the whole night!

This book is a lovely read-it-aloud for toddlers aged 3+. Kids will love to imagine the juggling granny and probably try juggling themselves too!

A Level 2 book from Pratham Publications, the authors have asked questions about juggling which makes children think and comprehend the story well.