I’m conscious I’ve not posted a Peapod’s Picks for a few weeks now either! Best laid plans… Speaking of which, the next few weeks of Peapod’s Picks will be the books from our book advent (as long as I can get my act together and post!) For this week though, it’s an old favourite…
This week: Alfie
I loved the Alfie series when I was little and, after receiving Snow in the Garden by Shirley Hughes (review to follow during our book Advent in December!) last week, I chose An Evening at Alfie’s as our bedtime story.
I’d been reminded of the wonderful way she depicts the little hiccups and triumphs, the daily events that make up family life and the little details of our everyday surroundings and happenings.
So we read An Evening at Alfie’s, where Alfie hears a drip drip drip and discovers a leak from a pipe while Maureen’s babysitting. When we finished, Peapod’s Dad said “Hmm. Well, that was an unusual one wasn’t it?” When I asked what he meant, he replied “Well, nothing happened.” which totally threw me.
To me, these stories are nostalgia and warmth; gentle tales full of the familiar. There’s no dragons or monsters or robots here. Nothing here of the ridiculous, crazy or wild. Here are children playing, shopping, having baths, going to parties, getting new shoes, losing toys – the events that are seemingly, well, uneventful but that are a child’s world.
But to his Dad, who’d clearly never read them as a child, they were books about the mundane, lacking excitement or adventure. He didn’t dislike it as such, just found it a little dull. I’m hoping to convert him…!
Have you read the Alfie books (or indeed any of Shirley Hughes’ others)? What do you think of them?
I’m afraid I’m with Dad on this one, I’ve never been a fan of the Alfie books. But I do love Shirley Hughes’ Dogger – it was my absolute favourite book as a child (and still is!!). I hope Peapod enjoyed them!
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My sister always liked Dogger. Alfie is definitely a nostalgic read for me.