Picture Book Love: Catch That Chicken

Summary: Catch That Chicken!

Catch That Chicken was the first book I read by the author Atinuke. She is popular for her Anna Hibiscus books, a series of chapter books set in Africa (many readers place the country as Nigeria as Atinuke is Nigerian). In this delightful picture book, young Lami who lives in a large village compound, is known to be the best chicken catcher. She runs quickly, trying to catch any chicken she’s asked to, until one day, her adventures lead to a sprained ankle and Lami has to learn new ways of catching chickens.

The Good

The illustrations in this book are GORGEOUS! Every page was a delight! The illustrator, Angela Brooksbank, does a brilliant job of creating vivid, colorful scenes, and Lami herself is a cutie! This picture book would be great for younger kids, ages 0-6 years because the text is sparse, but rhythmic, and the plot is easy to follow.

This book is also an excellent resource for showing what life is like for children who live in other places. It’s worth mentioning, of course, that not every place in “Africa” looks like this, and many children and adults who grew up in Africa (myself included) have never chased a chicken, but this is the way many other people live. They take pride in their culture and stories and kids should be shown that and taught to respect that as well.

As with any great picture book, I smiled hard at the last few pages as Lami learns some problem-solving skills, finding a new way to make the chickens come to her. Here are some beautiful page samples from this book.

Catch That Chicken sample pages
Catch That Chicken by atinuke
Catch That Chicken by atinuke

Overall: Catch That Chicken!

Catch That Chicken is an absolutely delightful picture book about a brave girl who catches chickens in her village. This book is full of vivid, breathtaking illustrations perfect for showing kids the life of a girl living in an African village. However, this book is more than just pretty pictures. In scant, lyrical prose, Nigerian author Atinuke shows little readers how to harness their problem-solving skills, and the fact that there’s often an easier — and safer way — to do almost everything!

Buy This Book

I received an electronic Advance Reader’s Copy of this book from Candlewick Press via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.

More Picture Book Reviews

Have you read this book or anything by Atinuke? I know so many fans of her Anna Hibiscus series! Have you read those?

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