Having just learned to swim and over-excited at the prospect of getting to the pool first, the littlest elephant Ellie, rushes through the jungle oblivious to the effect she’s having on the other animals in so doing. We however see the trouble she’s causing, unintentional though it is, as she bounds and bounces on her merry way until eventually one tiny animal makes her stop and take notice. Then after pondering upon what she’s been told, she understands the importance of taking more care, apologises, invites the other animals to come too, then, contrite she slows down and takes care until the pool comes into view. Finally, it’s a friendly mutually supportive team that takes the plunge, all together.
On her journey, this little pachyderm learns one of the life lessons that is so important for little humans to learn: to be mindful of how their actions impact on others and that they need to slow down and take notice of their surroundings, something they might find hard to grasp at first.
With occasional/ judicious use of speech bubbles, Kate Read’s bold, mixed media illustrations capture splendidly the feelings of the other creatures alongside the littlest elephant’s impulsiveness as she leaves a trail of havoc in her wake dashing through the lush vegetation and almost all the book’s pages to that wonderful final spread.