The First Slodge by Jeanne Willis

The Lovereading4Kids comment

Shortlisted for the English Picture Book Award 2016 Jeanne Willis is an expert at pinpointing human weaknesses, particularly those common in the very young, and this is a very funny morality tale about the importance of sharing. The first Slodge emerges from the primordial slime and has a wonderful time, gambolling around trilling ‘Mine, all mine!’ until the arrival of a second Slodge, a male this time. Hostilities break out between the two until a sudden external threat unites them. A happy last spread shows them – and their offspring – along with the message that the world is everyone’s to share. Jenni Desmond’s illustrations capture all the humour while providing a suitably ‘first morning’ feel. ~ Andrea Reece

The Good Book Guide logo The Good Book Guide Review. The first Slodge saw the first moon and stars, and took a bite out of the first fruit. The next day, she saw another bite had been taken. There was another Slodge! The two Slodges fight over the fruit. Then the second Slodge saves the first Slodge, and they realise it is better to share. This unusual story cleverly uses made-up characters to introduce the concept of sharing subtly and skilfully. (Ages 3–6)
~ Andrea Rayner


The First Slodge by Jeanne Willis

A wonderfully original and witty picture book from the award-winning author, Jeanne Willis (Who's in the Loo? andThe Bog Baby). This humorous exploration of sharing and friendship carries an important message: that the world belongs to everyone. Captivating illustrations from Jenni Desmond (Red Cat, Blue Cat) will delight adults and children alike.


Written like a spider's web - delicate and strong - The First Slodge contains equally impressive illustrations, full of flowing movement and energy with a sumptuous palette of soothing and sophisticated greens and blues... Funny, gentle, and full of life The First Slodge is a warmhearted parable about how things are better together when shared with generosity. - Playing By the Book Blog Part quirky creation myth, part friendship fable... an inviting setting for readers to explore themes of friendship, sharing, and stewardship. - Publishers Weekly A witty tale of a strange creature who wants to keep everything to itself, the message underlying this book is that sharing and friendship are far more rewarding than ownership. We like the originality and the simple illustrations. - Mr Fox Magazine We love the way this book wraps up - with a joyous page spread celebrating the diversity of life and how we truly do take for granted how we share our space in the world with a zillion other amazing creatures. But ... The Slodge is definitely the star and we absolutely ADORE her, squishy and green as she is! - Read It Daddy Blog A new text from Jeanne Willis is always a cause for celebration and this pairing with new illustration talent Jenni Desmond could introduce her fabulous writing to a style-savvy audience... [The First Slodge] is a gentle story that will capture the imagination and create conversation. A brilliant book, recommended for all! -- - Books for Keeps Learning to take a place in society and to become yourself amongst others that share the world with you is a large undertaking for a children's picturebook. But with careful text and sensitivity towards the Slodge and her journey, Jeanne Willis has pulled it off beautifully. This coupled with Jenni Desmond's friendly, playful illustrations (with fantastic facial expressions) deliver the large undertaking marvellously... I would gift this book to any child, young or old. -- - Children's Books Ireland Almost a kind of creation story; it's beautifully and simply expressed verbally and beautifully portrayed visually and, one to share as widely as possible. - Jill R Bennett Heartwarming story with lovely characterful, expressive illustrations. Utterly charming offering from a promising new pairing. - Peter's Books Inspiring and beautiful are the words I'd use to describe this book... I get a little teary eyed at the end of the book. - Chaos Castle

About the Author

Jeanne Willis

Jeanne Willis was born in St Albans and trained as an advertising copywriter at Watford College. She worked for various agencies creating press adverts and TV, cinema and radio commercials. She is now a full-time writer. Jeanne Willis is one of the most successful children’s picture book authors in the UK. Jeanne Willis wrote her first book aged five and has now written over eighty titles. She has won numerous awards, including the Children's Book Award, the Silver Smarties Prize and has been shortlisted for the Whitbread Award. She has written Who’s in the Loo? which won the Red House Children’s Book Award. Her hobbies include gardening, reading (nonfiction), natural history and collecting caterpillars. Jeanne has also worked on scripts for TV, including Polly Pocket and The Slow Norris, and a pilot TV series for Dr Xargle. She lives in North London with her husband and two children.

Photo credit: Justine Stoddart

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Book Info


32 pages
Interest Age: From 3


Jeanne Willis
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Publication date

6th April 2015




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