One of the family all-time favourite bug books.

The Fly – Written and Illustrated by Gusti. Allen & Unwin. Paperback rrp $14.95

This is a belly-laugh-out-loud picture book. Outrageously funny.

The fly decides to go for a swim, packing its bag, ball, towel and sunscreen. Unfortunately it decides to swim in the toilet. And we all know what can happen there!

Behind the funny story is a gentle message. No matter how much we prepare, unexpected things can still occur to change our plans.

The language is simple but engaging. Text is placed to complement the illustrations. When the toilet is flushed, the words swirl with the water.

Gusti is an international award winning illustrator and this is readily apparent in his artwork. There is a sense of humour in every brushstroke.

Images are striking, with the fly placed collage-like on bold, spacious backgrounds. The fly has a cartoon-like appearance which is an immediate attention grabber. Gusti cleverly uses a combination of background and the fly’s big round eyes to show emotions ranging from relaxed to fearful.

The fly is always a comic character, whether floating on his back in the toilet, spindly legs kicking, or peering nervously up from the bowl. Despite the fly’s terror, even the youngest reader will not be frightened.

Children, from 3 – 7 years, will love this book. Especially boys! And parents who read it aloud will find it hard not to laugh mid-sentence.

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