Reviewed by David Savage
Marco and Polo are hamsters that love to play together and have adventures (skydiving, climbing and lion dancing). But one day, Marco’s little cousins turn up with a note from his Aunt Fluff asking him to look after them (around 10 of them) as she needs some “ME”. But the note also had a warning “Never leave them alone!”.
With the addition of some many younger and mischievous hamsters to look after, Marco thinks that their adventures are over until Polo comes up with an idea; they will find a hamster sitter. So they set about making leaflets, posters and advertising in the local paper; Hamster Sitter Wanted!
Things are going great with sitters turning up, so it enables Marco and Polo to continue with their adventures. But after 2 sitters refuse to come back again as they could not cope with the mischievous lot, Marco and Polo are resigned to having to look after them. That is until Ms Bottomus arrives who turns out to be the perfect hamster sitter.
Overall, Hamster Sitter Wanted is a great picture book story. It has been written, by Tracy Gunaratnam, in a way that will appeal to children and they will be able to grasp the words and meaning and repeat it back. It is cheeky, fun, playful and engaging and children will love it (I know the 5-year-old twins did, as did I, probably more so for the more quite literal hamster sitter ending!).
It has been beautifully illustrated by Hannah Marks, even down to small details such as each hamster having their name printed on their shirts.
This is a fantastic story of trying to deal with naughty and mischievous family members and children will love it.
RRP: £7.99 (paperback)