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The Gruffalo

  • Paperback
The nation's favourite bedtime story!
The Gruffalo
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'A mouse took a stroll through the deep dark wood. A fox saw the mouse and the mouse looked good.' Walk further into the deep dark wood, and discover what happens when the quick-thinking mouse comes face to face with an owl, a snake and a hungry gruffalo ...
Julia Donaldson is one of today's most popular children's writers. Her many best-selling picture book collaborations with Axel Scheffler include THE GRUFFALO'S CHILD (978-1-4050-2046-6), THE SNAIL AND THE WHALE (978-0-333-98224-2) and CHARLIE COOK'S FAVOURITE BOOK (978-1-4050-3470-8). Julia also writes plays and songs, and is always in demand for her brilliant children's shows. Axel Scheffler is a star illustrator in the children's book world, and has created many wonderful books for Macmillan. He has enjoyed particular acclaim for his work with Julia Donaldson, but is also the creator of fantastic novelty books such as THE TICKLE BOOK (978-1-4050-5363-1), as well as MOTHER GOOSE'S NURSERY RHYMES (978-0-333-96136-0), a treasury of nursery rhymes and original stories.
A clever, exuberant story in rhyme with strong, color-saturated pictures to match . . . This is a sure bet. (Booklist)
W 2000 Blue Peter Book Awards: The Best Book to Read Aloud
This is a marvellous, entertaining story which brilliantly demonstrates how humour and metaphor can be so effective in communicating important messages. During a walk through the dark woods a little mouse frightens off various predators by pretending to be on the way to meet a gruffalo. This fearsome beast has awesome features - terrible tusks and teeth, orange eyes, purple prickles, warts and knobbly knees - and its favourite food is, variously, roasted fox, owl ice cream or scrambled snake. Of course, it exists only in the mouse's imagination - or does it? In a neat twist, when the mouse actually meets a gruffalo (whose favourite food is really mouse sandwiches), it cleverly uses the other predators to convince the creature that a mouse is pretty scary, and its favourite food is...gruffalo crumble. Result: one fleeing gruffalo; one contented mouse safe to walk in the woods. A brilliant, funny book, written in flowing rhyme and imaginatively illustrated, well-deserving of its 1999 Smarties Gold Award. (Kirkus UK)
The action of this rhymed and humorous tale centers upon a mouse who "took a stroll/through the deep dark wood./A fox saw the mouse/and the mouse looked good." The mouse escapes being eaten by telling the fox that he is on his way to meet his friend the gruffalo (a monster of his imagination), whose favorite food is roasted fox. The fox beats a hasty retreat. Similar escapes are in store for an owl and a snake; both hightail it when they learn the particulars: tusks, claws, terrible jaws, eyes orange, tongue black, purple prickles on its back. When the gruffalo suddenly materializes out of the mouse's head and into the forest, the mouse has to think quick, declaring himself inedible as the "scariest creature in the deep dark wood," and inviting the gruffalo to follow him to witness the effect he has on the other creatures. When the gruffalo hears that the mouse's favorite food is gruffalo crumble, he runs away. It's a fairly innocuous tale, with twists that aren't sharp enough and treachery that has no punch. Scheffler's funny scenes prevent the suspense from culminating; all his creatures, predator and prey, are downright lovable. (Kirkus Reviews)
Winner of Smarties Book Prize Gold Award 1999.
Winner of Smarties Book Prize 0-5 Category 1999.
Shortlisted for Blue Peter Book Award 2000.
Audience Age
Pan Macmillan
Axel Scheffler
Macmillan Children's Books
Place of Publication
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
colour illustrations
Julia Donaldson
Publication Date

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