If I had a unicorn

If I had a unicorn

By Author / Illustrator

Gabby Dawnay, Alex Barrow


Picture Books

Age range(s)



Thames & Hudson Ltd








Have you ever imagined what it would be like to have a unicorn for a pet? Besides being much less angry than a troll and far more conveniently sized than a giant, unicorns only ever eat ice-cream for breakfast AND... every time you get upset they feed you candyfloss!

In this humorous, energetically rhyming tale, a little girl experiences exactly what life would be like with a magical creature for a pet - from sprinkling stardust on grumpy parents to sliding into football practice on a rainbow. This book, the latest in the bestselling 'If I Had...' series, celebrates the magic of unicorns in a way that will appeal to children who are allergic to pink.



What pet does every little girl dream of owning? A Unicorn. My 5 year old believes that if she wishes hard enough, she might just wake up and have a unicorn lying at the foot of her bed. If I had a unicorn explores the imagination of every small child and what it might be like to own their dream pet.

A bright orange book that jumps off the shelf. The little girl explores what it would be like to have a variety of mythical creatures staying with them; giants, mermaids, dragons and explains why it wouldn't be convenient to have these creatures. She eventually realises that to have a unicorn would be the very best pet of all.

The rhyming story explores all the amazing reasons for owning a unicorn such as making wishes, eating a variety of cakes, adventures, flying in rainbows and many more exciting things she would do with her unicorn. At this point my daughter loves to tell me all the exciting things she would do if SHE had a unicorn. This picture book opens the imagination of your child and encourages them to discuss their own ideas of what they would do if they owned a unicorn.

With a little light humour, (if unicorns eat rainbows, what must their poo look like?) this book is bright and colourful. The illustrations are big and bold, but I loved the simplicity of the unicorn who itself was simply drawn and white, contrasting with the other animals. It is as if the author has delved right into the imagination of a little girl, right down to the little details of the character dressing up as a unicorn herself, and imagining plaiting its hair in the bath. My son also really enjoyed reading this picture book as he loved discussing what animal he would have and all the fun things he would do.

I also loved the absent words, replaced with pictures to encourage shared reading and following of the story for smaller children, this was a clever and nice touch to this picture book. A lovely story that has been read many times, simply to explore all the exciting things we would do if we had a pet unicorn.

Picture book / Reviewed by Joanna Hewish, teacher

Suggested Reading Age 3+


Other titles