BEA'S BOOK NOOK "I can't imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once." C. S. Lewis “If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.” ― Oscar Wilde

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Bea Reviews Babbit & Joan, A Rabbit and A Phone by Denise Turu

Publisher: Flyaway Books
Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: April 14th, 2020
Buying Links: Amazon* | Apple Books* | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Google Books | Kobo |* affiliate links; the blog receives a small commission from purchases made through these links.

Blurb from goodreads:

Sometimes friends are best off with a little time apart. That’s true for Babbit, a rabbit, and Joan, his phone. Yet Babbit has never left Joan at home before. Does he dare go out on a solo excursion? How will he know what to do? What if he gets lost?

My Thoughts:

I was a little leary when I requested this that it might be too preachy, too messagey for my taste. Happily, it was not. Oh, it's preachy and predictable, but it's a decent story with nice artwork, and Turu doesn't hit the reader over the head with her message. The topic of spending lots of time on a cell phone, on a screen, is certainly topical right now with so many people isolated at home and spending so much time on a phone or tablet as well as trying to entertain their children of all ages.

The story starts when cell phones go on strike. Turu has anthropomorphized both animals and technology. Given her message of reducing use of phones and screens, making cell phones more appealing may not have been the best approach. Babbit names his phone Joan; he pats it, talks to it, and even gives it a bed of its own. None of which will do anything to lessen the appeal of playing with or using a cell phone or tablet.

The story itself is not bad. Babbit goes for a walk without his phone, gets lost (I can relate; I love my GPS), makes friends along the way, who are also without their phones, and eventually makes his way back home. It's a mini adventure story, with only gentle scares, perfect for young children. The artwork is muted, with lots of white space, and a moderate amount of detail; it's not busy. The forest Babbit and friends travel through is a mix of deciduous forest, desert, and jungle. Realism is not the point here. :D

"Babbit & Joan" is sweet, a little preachy, a little confused as to the exact message it wants to send, with an adventure story most toddlers and young preschoolers will enjoy. Older children may find the story too babyish. It's a nice book, but not a must-read.



  1. This sounds pretty good for little ones. I like the things that my phone can do but I think I was happier before cell phones were in everyone's pocket.

  2. Sounds cute. I miss the era of children's books... but I'm glad my kids are not little any more - especially during this quarantine.

    1. Yeah, the young years are extra challenging right now.


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