Sunday, July 7, 2024

Paul the Peacock by Tilly Matthews

Today's read had me smiling the second I saw the cover. It's so bright and joyful...and that small loris at the bottom adds a cute touch. Yep, a loris. It's been awhile since I've seen a loris in a picture book. What about you?

Anyway, I'm hoping this one doesn't kill things by being too heavy on the messaging end and let's the fun shine. Let's take a peek and find out how it does!

by Tilly Matthews
Happy Yak
Picture Book
32 pages
ages 4 to 8


Paul has everything. He has the biggest nest, the most loyal friend, and of course, the most beautiful feathers in the forest. But as you can guess, he’s not the humblest of birds… 

In fact… 

Paul is a selfish, rude, and arrogant peacock who isn’t very nice to his friend Norris the Loris and the other animals in the forest. He’s pampered by everyone around him, and never has to shake a feather. Then, one evening, "after another long, tiring day of being perfect", there is a huge storm. Paul loses everything (including his precious feathers). He has to go on an adventure through the forest to try and retrieve his most prized possession. He sets off to find his feathers and ultimately discovers something even more important… 

This hilarious story with comic deadpan moments and vivid, expressive illustrations conveys an important message about kindness, friendship, and humility. Follow Paul as he’s brought down to earth from his treetop penthouse and learns to appreciate the friends he’s lucky to have around him. This is a fantastically funny fable that gently shows young readers how to be less materialistic, and more modest and mindful of other people’s feelings.


Learning to value others shines bright and bold in this enjoyably silly and thought-filled read.

Paul the peacock is an amazing bird...and he makes sure he stays that way. His beautiful feathers are his pride and joy. He's pampered day and night, never allowing even the slightest strain or harm to draw near, and that's all thanks to his friend, Noris the loris. One day, Noris has had enough of serving Paul without the slightest hint of thanks. Sick of being taken for granted, he leaves, and at the worst time for Paul. Paul wakes up to not only find Noris gone, but an unimaginable disaster has taken place. Determined to keep his dignity, Paul heads out on his own, but life isn't as simple as he thinks.

The vibrant illustrations fit wonderfully to Paul the peacock. The bright and bold colors demand as much attention as the bird himself, making the situation very clear as poor Noris does his best to satisfy. The imbalanced relationship between the two is easy to notice and will draw sympathy as readers see what's going on. The emotions come across clearly and make the message surrounding thankfulness, friendship, and kindness sit in an understandable way. But it's the little, silly details which hook and make this into an entertaining read from beginning to end. The message might be serious, but giggles and laughs are guaranteed from one page to the next.

The tale makes a lovely read aloud and is well-suited for the age group. It presents just enough to keep the story clear, while the illustrations do the rest. It's one of those reads, which is sure to hear the phrase 'again'. 

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