A story for Hippo ISBN: 9780749740221
Published by Egmont, 2001
Wise old Hippo and jokey, funny Monkey are best friends. They live on the river bank and tell each other stories. One night Hippo tells Monkey that she is very old and tired and must go away to die. Monkey is incensed; there will be no one to tell him stories or laugh at his jokes. 'Nobody knows how to live forever,' says Hippo. Monkey replies, 'Then happily ever after isn't true.' Hippo explains that he has had his 'happily ever after' and that Monkey will have his too, with new friends and new jokes and stories. When Hippo leaves, Monkey is bereft. He cries and the whole forest is sad. Then Little Chameleon comes along and helps Monkey to come to terms with his grief. Together they tell stories and Little Chameleon sings (his special talent), and they find their happy ever after. The chalky, compact pictures have a feel of Africa while not trying to be realistic, and Monkey's emotions, first of anger at being left, and then of great sadness are clearly deliniated. A lovely production.