The reissue of a family favourite is always a delight! My, now adult, children fell on this picture book (first published in 1972) with interest, searching for their favourite illustrations! The key to its success is the balance between the rhythm of the verse (which is easy on the reader – not always the case!) and the detail of John Vernon Lord’s humorous, highly organized illustrations which demand re-reads and lots of re-exploring.
Four million wasps descend on the village of Itching Down and seem set to stay causing considerable consternation and pain. No plan to get rid of them works – it takes the whole village working together to come up with a novel solution. One of the great charms of this book is in the depiction of the characters and following them through the story. No one seems to be too bothered about the plight of the wasps as the plan succeeds and the village can celebrate – such is life!