Baby book club: Stick Man by Julia Donaldson, illustrated by Axel Scheffler

Welcome to another baby book club! This month baby librarians Tilly and Marian discuss the seasonally-appropriate picture book Stick Man by Julia Donaldson, illustrated by Axel Scheffler (it’s almost Christmas, and Santa makes an appearance — see, seasonally appropriate!).

Tilly: Hi Marian! I started reading this book again with Mummy recently and I like it a lot. She said she used to read it to me when I was a baby but I don’t remember that. We read it now though and it’s fun. When did you first read this book? Do you like it?

Marian: I first read it a week ago when Mommy checked it out from the library. I read it outside by myself first. Mommy read it to me later while I sat on the potty. I like it okay. I like sticks and seeing all the children.

Tilly: This is a fun book to listen to, like the other books by Julia Donaldson. They are very lovely rhyming books that are so nice to hear. I have another favourite book by her which we read all the time now. It’s called Tiddler, about a fish. Do you like listening to this one? Or do you prefer to turn the pages yourself and look at the pictures?

Marian: I like a book by Julia Donaldson too–Room on the Broom. We discussed it last month. It’s still one of my favorite books. I like Mommy to read it to me, but I interrupt her as often as I can to tell her what I see in the pictures, so it’s hard to comment on the rhythm. I get really excited when I see pictures of things I know the words for, and I can tell I sometimes irritate Mommy. She usually gives up on reading it to me after a while, and we just look at the pictures and shout about what we see.

Tilly: I like all the different scenes with Stick Man, and all the different sticks he got to be. I liked the river and the sea! I love water. I think my favourite one is the dad on the beach. I like the beach and my daddy. Have you been to the beach? What was your favourite scene?

Marian holding Stick ManMarian: I haven’t been to the beach, but I love seeing beaches in books! We have a creek in our backyard and at my favorite park, so I splash in those. My favorite scene is when the stick is used as an arm in a snowman. I like snowmen! They’re white and round and have faces. Mommy says we’ll have to wait until it snows to build one. I’m excited!

Tilly: My daddy keeps asking why a stick needs to go for a jog. He’s a stick! Mummy says it’s because cardiovascular health is important and maybe Stick Man just wants cardio exercise. I think maybe he just likes running. I love running! I love going running with my Aunt T and with Grandpa. Running running running! What do you think? Why do you think Stick Man went for a jog? Should he just stay inside where it’s safer?

Marian: I agree, Tilly, running is FUN! Everyone should run everywhere! It makes no sense to stay inside, and even if you’re inside, you should still run. Running is good everywhere, though it is especially good outside. I went for a run at the greenway this morning. Stick Man went on adventures while he was running, and saw lots of neat things, so I think he made a good choice to go on a jog!

Tilly: The ending was a little scary. Stick Man almost got stuck forever! And never seeing his family again. Were you scared? I would be scared if I never saw my family again.

Marian: I don’t let Mommy read that page, so I didn’t know that was happening. I thought he’d gotten sleepy and took a nap and then Mommy and I made snoring sounds, which isn’t scary. Mommies and Daddies but especially Mommy’s are always around. I don’t think Mommies can go away. It’s not allowed. All I have to do is call Mommy and she’s right there. I wonder why Stick Man didn’t try to call out for his family? They’re probably like Mommy and are just trying to read or something. They’d come if he called.

Tilly: Thank you for reading with me, Marian! This is our last book club for the year!

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