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Book Details

Too Much Stuff Too Much Stuff
Emily Gravett

Publisher: Two Hoots
ISBN: 9781509857333
Published: 10/29/2020
Price: £12.99

From the creator of modern classic Meerkat Mail comes a very funny woodland story showing the dangers of having too much stuff. Too Much Stuff is set in the same forest as Gravett's award-winning Tidy, it features a host of gorgeous woodland animals, including Pete the badger. Meg and Ash are a pair of magpies who are building a nest for their perfect eggs. Although they begin their nest construction using the usual mud, sticks and grass, Meg and Ash are soon convinced that their nest doesn't have enough stuff and begin to collect more things to add to an ever-growing pile. From cuckoo clocks to mops and socks, a pram and even a car - their need for stuff seems endless. Until - crash! - the inevitable happens. Emily Gravett's engaging, exquisitely illustrated story will appeal to fans of Tidy and of such classics as The Animals of Farthing Wood and the glorious package including a double-sided jacket with shaped flaps, make it a perfect gift for young eco-warriors . . . and for everyone.

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A simple story that has a very deep message for young people - material objects are not the most important thing in life. In a world filled with 'stuff', showing off and material gratification, this picture teaches young children that gratification is not made by filling one's nest (home) with 'things' but filled by realising what the most important things are in your life.

Too Much Stuff is a fantastic rhyming story using two magpies (known for collecting shiny objects) who fall in love and build a nest together. When the magpies have created, lined and filled their nest, they lay 4 eggs, but soon being to worry that 'their nest needed more stuff to make it the best'. The two magpies set about collecting a humorous array of objects and piling them up in their nest until the nest is quite overcome and they have lost sight of their eggs.

Suddenly, 'CRACK', all the 'stuff' falls to the ground, littering the woodland area and the eggs cannot be found. The other woodland creatures help the magpies recycle the 'stuff', finding useful new homes for each of the objects they collected. But where are the eggs...?

My six year old found the message of this story very accessible. When discussing the story and asking him what he thought the book was trying to teach us, he was clearly able to explain that the magpies were so busy collecting and filling their nest with the stuff, that they forgot about their babies - the most important thing. We then had a lovely discussion about material purchases, recycling and saving the planet from being too overwhelmed with everyone's stuff.

This picture book is an important book for children to read. It is perfect for an early year's environment as it leads into so many activities - discussions, drawing and writing activities such as: what would you put in your nest? The colourful and animated illustrations are also perfect to read to very young children as each character has clear expressions on their face.

I love this book and have already read it countless times with my children. A picture book that has beautiful illustrations, a lovely story and an important message; what more could you ask for?

Picture book / Ages 4+ / Reviewed by Joanna Hewish, teacher
Joanna Hewish - Teacher

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