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Not Now, Bernard

Written by David McKee

Illustrated by David McKee

Books of the Month Family / Home Stories Featured Books for 3+ readers Featured Books for 5+ readers Humorous Star Books

LoveReading View on Not Now, Bernard

A must-read, must-own, must-share picture book classic | Special 40th Anniversary Edition

June 2020 Book of the Month

It’s hard to believe that Not Now Bernard is 40 years old. It’s as fresh and funny as the day it was first written and, best of all, just as shocking. In fact, it doesn’t matter how many times you read it, the end is always an absolute thrill and if that’s not genius, I don’t know what is. In the story Bernard tries unsuccessfully to get his parents’ attention, getting the same reply each time: ‘Not now, Bernard’. Even when he’s eaten by a monster, his parents don’t notice! Parents have to feel uncomfortable, while children themselves are alive to the fact that the monster is probably Bernard (and that we’ve all got a bit of monster in us). One of the greatest books for children ever written.

Andrea Reece

Other Info

Two of our Guest Editors have chosen Not Now, Bernard as one of their favourite books.

Sophie Mckenzie 'This dark, rather depressing picture book opened my eyes to what was possible with children's writing. Adults often assume kids should be protected from what scares or threatens them in literature, but Not now, Bernard, helped me to realise that nothing needs to be taboo - its all in how you treat the material.'

and chosen by Michael Rosen.  'An Andersen classic, this well-loved picture book story is about parents too preoccupied to notice their own child! They are so busy doing their own thing, that a monster can eat Bernard's dinner, break his toys, and even eat Bernard, without being noticed! An hilarious cautionary tale.'

Not Now, Bernard Synopsis

Bernard's got a problem: he's found a monster in the back garden but his mum and dad are just too busy to notice. So Bernard tries to befriend the monster... and that doesn't go quite to plan.

Loved by children, monsters and adults for forty years, David McKee's iconic picture book is celebrated in this special anniversary paperback.

Not Now, Bernard Press Reviews

 '...even more relevant in an era of parents glued to their mobile phones' Daily Mail, Best Reads Ever

'Arguably the finest children's book ever written, McKee's clever fable is both a warning to neglectful parents and a very funny story about being ignored.' The I Newspaper

'My favourite books for very young children are Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak and Not Now Bernard by David McKee.' Michael Rosen

'Not Now Bernard is THE book of our times' Frank Cottrell-Boyce

'It's so good!' Adam Buxton

'Funny to a four year old and meaningful to a 36 year old' Ben Bailey Smith aka Doc Brown

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781783449736
Publication date: 04/06/2020
Publisher: Andersen Press Ltd
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781783442980
Publication date: 10/09/2015
Publisher: Andersen Press Ltd
Format: Hardback

ISBN: 9781783442904
Publication date: 02/04/2015
Publisher: Andersen Press Ltd
Format: Paperback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781783449736
Publication date: 4th June 2020
Author: David McKee
Illustrator: David McKee
Publisher: Andersen Press Ltd
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 32 pages
Suitable for: 3+ readers, 5+ readers
Genres: Family / Home Stories, Humorous
Recommendations: Books of the Month, Star Books
Collections: 40 Great Bedtime Stories for the Under 5s, Our favourite children's books of 2020,

About David McKee

David McKee was born in Devon and studied at Plymouth Art College. In the early part of his career, McKee regularly drew and sold humorous drawings to magazines and newspapers such as The Times Educational Supplement, Punch and the Reader’s Digest. David McKee has written and illustrated over 50 picture books for Andersen Press and has penned a number of children’s classics including King Rollo, Mr Benn, Not Now Bernard and Elmer the Patchwork Elephant. David loves to paint and now lives in the South of France but regularly visits the UK.  One of the ...

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