How can a regular goat possibly compete with a UNICORN, especially one who makes it rain cupcakes? In a previous post, I listed Bob Shea’s book Unicorn Thinks He’s Pretty Great as a 2013 pick. Now, more than a month into 2014, Bob Shea’s colourful picture book gets a whole post from me, highlighting why I think his book is pretty great.
To start will, I think the premise itself was enough to sell me on the title. Normally, you would think that a horse would be jealous of a unicorn, but by casting a surly-looking goat as the envious protagonist, Shea added that extra something.
Goat thought he was a cool guy, but since Unicorn came around, every time he does something, he finds that Unicorn just does it better. Goat tries to make an entrance by biking, but Unicorn one-ups him by flying onto the scene. Goat thinks he’s going to be a hit with his dance routine (as DJ Gruff), but how can he compete with Unicorn, who is prancing? My favourite is when Goat tries to put on a magic show (this time as the Great Goatini) and then he notices that Unicorn is just turning things into gold. How can Goat possibly compete?
But when Goat finally gets to know Unicorn, he finds that Unicorn is surprisingly nice. On top of that, Unicorn is amazed, and just a teeny bit jealous, of all the cool things that Goat can do. Goat has cloven hooves which let him stand on mountains, while Unicorn would never be able to do that! As Unicorn praises the things that make Goat unique, you can see a nice friendship forming, with Goat noticing all the things that make Unicorn great without being jealous. Rarely has a book on jealousy been so much fun to read and share!
As usual when it comes to Bob Shea, the illustrations are bright and fun. There are loads of details that make it great for one-on-one reading, although I’ve loved using it for bigger groups. Fun detail: if you look closely, you can see that the cats from Cheetah Can’t Lose in this story. This book is share-able, fun and funny, which means that it is pretty much awesome!