I have been waiting in anticipation for the release of ‘Mango & Bambang The Not-a Pig’ by Polly Faber and Clara Vulliamy. I knew if the story inside it was just a tiny bit as gorgeous as it looked on the outside then it would be an absolute gem and I was right it’s fantastic. Unbelievably this is Polly Faber’s debut book and combined with the extremely talented Clara Vulliamy’s illustrations it’s a must have read.
The book contains four short stories and is perfect for newly confident readers or to share with younger readers. We are introduced to our characters via this delightful illustration and find out how our unlikely friends Mango and Bambang meet in the opening story ‘Mango and the Muddle.’
One of my favourite parts of the book is the description of Mango which gives us an insight into just what kind of girls she is,
‘Mango Allsorts was a girl good at all sorts of things. That was not the same as being a good girl, but she was that too. Most of the time.’
Mango is a karate lover, chess player and diver off high boards at the swimming pool and lives with her very busy Papa. We get the feeling that she has to keep herself very busy to stop herself from feeling lonely and she is very good at keeping herself busy.
All this changes when Mango encounters quite unexpectedly one day a Tapir called Mango who is causing quite a commotion lying in the middle of a zebra crossing.
All the grown ups are in a kerfuffle and don’t know what to do and panic over what they believe is a mutant sewer -pig in their midst. But Mango being a very intelligent sort of a girl informs them that Bambang is clearly a tapir who has probably got lost after taking a wrong turn in the jungle. She manages to persuade Bambang to move which all the grown ups have failed to due and invites him home for pancakes and to stay with them and so their unlikely friendship begins.
The rest of the story is full of delightful adventures for our pair but we also start to see just how in different ways they need each other. It is also a reassuring tale for children who might feel like they don’t quite belong or need support to try something new as we see both our characters experience these emotions. At the heart of this lovely story is a true tale of friendship and kindness which I found so enchanting, I really can’t wait to see more from our duo.
Polly Faber’s beautiful storytelling is accompanied by Clara Vulliamy’s stunning illustrations which brings the story alive in this vibrant and humorous way. The whole book is a visual treat from start to finish and I coveted from first seeing it because it was so gorgeous. You can’t help but fall in love with Mango and Bambang, I know I certainly have!
To find out more how Polly Faber brought Mango & Bambang to life you can read her guest blog on the following link: