All Kinds of Friends

Plot twist alert! In this follow up to All Kinds of Families, Sophy Henn again flips the script. Instead of depicting human interactions to explore different types of relationships, she turns to the animal kingdom and unusual animal pairings found in the wild. The relationship between each animal pairing is used to help young readers understand what it is to be a friend, encouraging them to think about their own relationships.

Henn’s use of colour in her illustrations cleverly reflects the theme and creates a lovely sense of engagement and warmth. The colourways used on each spread subtly hint at the natural habitat of each animal pairing and the use of soft outlines depicting the animals helps to highlight the relationships described in the text. The positioning of the animals in the foreground of each spread will appeal to the youngest of readers.

Bright, cheerful and engaging this book is a sophisticated and clever blurring of the boundaries between a narrative and information text. Perfect for sharing, it offers lots of opportunity for pointing and talking and thinking about the natural world as well as friends and friendships which young readers will love. Sure to become a family favourite, it will also be perfect for story time in early years settings.