This fun interactive book encourages verbal interaction between children and adults (or older children) and is more of an activity book than a narrative. It would be a sweet book for a father to read to a child because the crane guy meets up with his child at the end.
The rhyming text concentrates on asking the reader to find things, people and activities that start with particular letters and two double pages of illustrations offer the opportunities to do this. The richly onomatopoeic suggestions by the author to help with each letter’s initial sound give hints to the young reader as to what they are looking for, eg: “Seagulls soaring, skimming, swooping, shrieking, swerving...” Crane Guy only concentrates on some of the more common consonants, which I think is a strength, as the whole alphabet can be overwhelming and counterproductive when children are developing phonemic awareness.
Title: Crane Guy: a game of I SPY from up high
Author: Sally Sutton
Illustrator: Sarah Wilkins
Publication: March 2022
Age Range: Babies through to Early Primary
Do you have any advisory warnings? No
Reviewer: Carola Crawford, English teacher, Karanga Mai Young Parents’ College, Kaiapoi
How are you recommending this book? Highly Recommended
Opening sentence: Crane guy, up so high, Building towers in the sky, Tell me, tell me what you spy.