The elephant and the bad baby

by Elfrida Vipont

Other authorsRaymond Briggs (Illustrator)
Paper Book, 1969



Call number



London, Hamilton, 1969.

User reviews

LibraryThing member dangle
This is my son's favourite book at the moment! He's 26 months, and is starting to "read" along. He loves pointing out the elephant's trunk in each illustration, and finds new things to name each time we read it.
His great gran gave it to him for his 2nd birthday, and it's perfect for him at this age. Maybe a bit long for a younger child, although the repetition is fun.… (more)
LibraryThing member TomKitten
The gold standard for read-aloud picture books for three and a half to five year olds. I've yet to see a pre-schooler who did not respond with delight to it's absurd charm, rollicking repetition and faux moralizing. Vipont (text) and Raymond Briggs (illustrations) are in perfect sync.
LibraryThing member AbigailAdams26
An obliging elephant takes a baby for the ride of his life in this cumulative tale from English author Elfrida Vipont, who is better known for her series of children's novels about an extended Quaker family, including the Carnegie Medal-winning The Lark on the Wing, than for her picture-books. Trundling along, the elephant provides the baby - the bad baby - with a variety of treats, all pilfered from various stores and stalls that they pass on their way. They are pursued by an ever-growing string of irate shop-owners, until the elephant, realizing that the baby has never said please - not once! - stops abruptly, leading to chaos, and to some unexpected consequences...

I don't know, all told, that I was as impressed with The Elephant and the Bad Baby as some other readers - apparently it was included in 1001 Children's Books You Must Read Before You Grow Up - although I can see that it would make an appealing read-aloud selection, with the list of pursuers growing on each two-page spread. Somehow, the narrative didn't really strike a chord with me, as I expected it to do, after simply loving Vipont's The Lark in the Morn, although I did appreciate the irony of the elephant's chastisement (intentional? unintentional?) of the baby, when he's been out stealing the goods. All that said, there was nothing really wrong with the story either, despite my lack of enthusiasm, and the artwork, done by Raymond Briggs, creator of such wordless picture-books as The Snowman and Father Christmas, was charming, alternating between full color and black and white illustrations. Mileage will vary with this one, I suspect.
… (more)
LibraryThing member Cheryl_in_CC_NV
Surreal and magical. I love all the details in the pictures. Many little ones will like this read over and over again, crowing & giggling & chanting along each time... so it's a good thing the reader has interesting pictures to explore.

Original publication date



0241016398 / 9780241016398

Call number



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