Score: 95+/100 (9.5+ out of 10)
Can We Get a Rhinoceros? by Christian Kueng is one of the funnest and most entertaining children's books of the year! It's also one of the most colorful and vibrant!
This book follows a curious, imaginative little boy who continuously nags his mom for a new pet.
And it's not just any pet!
This kid wants a RHINO!
His mother, who is both loving and rational, tries to entertain his idea by having her son think about the consequences and repercussions of owning such a pet. However, when the boy can't have a rhino, he asks for a whale!
Of course, the mother is able to remind her son that whales are also very big and wouldn't fit in their little bathtub.
The boy then inquires about owning a tiger, a seabird, a pig, or a snake!
It's so much fun seeing all of these imaginative scenarios and (mostly) adorable animals!
Also, we just couldn't help but fall in love with both the boy and his mom. They're such a loving and cute duo! Even though she knows his big ambitions aren't feasible, the boy's mother plays along. Rather than shooting down his dreams, she uses logic and reason to invite her son to think things through. This is actually great parenting. We should be encouraging our children to use their brains and to problem-solve.
Also, not going to lie, the mom is easy on the eyes in a Disney-mom sorta way. So, that helps.
The illustrations by Nana Melkadze are top-notch. They are bright, colorful, vibrant, and inviting. Melkadze also pays very close attention to detail. For example, in the scene in which the boy is asking about owning a whale, you can see that the boy actually owns a little toy whale that may have inspired his interest in whales.
It's also interesting to note the number of different scenarios that we see the main characters in. In many of these scenes, the mom wears different kinds of clothes and styles her hair in different ways. Even the boy's clothes are different from the beginning of the book to the end. So, the author and illustrator are really good at portraying the passage of time.
This is how relentless and persistent the boy has been about his need for a pet!
Lastly, the expressions of the two characters (and the animals) are all very distinct and readable. You know exactly what they are thinking based on how they are reacting. There's one scene in which the mom has had enough of being nagged, and she shows it with both her facial expression (closing her eyes) and body language (covering her ears).
This is a great children's book!
Check it out on Amazon!