Learning About Friendship

Children’s Review
Recommend Ages 2 to 6

I Don’t Want to Be a Pea

by Ann Bonwill and Illustrated by Simon Rickerty

The value of a true friend can never be underestimated.  This book shows the relationship between friends Hugo the hippo and Bella the bird.  The two friends are planning a  fairy tale costume party and both have definite opinions on what they should wear.  Hugo wants to go as a princess from Princess in the Pea and Bella will be the pea.  Bella does not agree so instead suggests she will be a mermaid and Hugo will be her rock.  This goes back and forth and soon the friends decide not go together at all.  After being apart for a while, they both come to the conclusion that going without the other will be no fun.  They decide to both be peas to the surprise of each other and their friends making it a happy party for all.

This simple story of friendship and compromise is done in pastels of yellow, blue, pink and of course green for the peas.  The characters have expressive faces when they are happy and sad making their feeling easily understood.  Children love animals especially when they are doing silly things.  Hugo and Bella dress up in various costumes to display their differing ideas for the party.  In the end through compromise, they find the clothes don’t matter because the company you keep is much more important.

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