Review – Where is Fred?

Fred may be a snowy white fuzzball of a caterpillar but he’s also a master of disguise. When Gerald the Crow gets a little peckish, he’s forced to resort to a series of giggle-inducing, highly camouflaged antics, to save his fuzzy hide.

First it’s the necklace of a stylish passerby. Then it’s the busy white eyebrows of a man on a park bench. Then it’s the princess-like headband of a tea-party hosting girl. And what about the moustachey fuzz on the upper lip of the man selling helium balloons?

Fred certainly knows how to keep Gerald guessing, and what’s even more priceless than his super-creative hiding places, is the look on Gerald’s face as he peers intently at Fred-in-disguise, musing to himself about how extremely familiar these moustaches and necklaces and eyebrows appear.

I’m absolutely loving Ali Pye’s eye-boggling illustrations in Where is Fred? They remarkably skirt the divide between pastel and bright, and her placement of images, including occasional cartoon-strip style layouts, make this book a visual feast.

Creative typography beautifully highlights a somewhat higher-than-average amount of text, that nonetheless flows beautifully and is pocked with enormously entertaining dry wit and lolloping dialogue that’s an absolute pleasure to read.

Great fun for both kids and adults.

Where is Fred? is published by Hardie Grant Egmont.

Published by

Tania McCartney

Tania McCartney is an author of children's books and adult non-fiction. Recent books include Riley and the Grumpy Wombat: A journey around Melbourne, and Australian Story: An Illustrated Timeline. She's also an editor, publisher and founder of Kids Book Review.