Ostensibly a straightforward joke book but at the same time so much more, The Ha Ha Bonk Book is an example of the stunning artistry of the husband-and-wife team behind the classics, Peepo, Each Peach Pear Plum, and Burglar Bill.
A first look through regales you with all the classic jokes, word play and puns that you’ll ever need at primary school. But weaving their way through all of this humour, both subtle and slapstick, are the delightful and ever-charming illustrations. Just as in the Ahlbergs’ more well-known picture books, the pictures and words, Janet and Allan, are inextricably linked in ways playful, subversive, ironic, referential. There is wit and wisdom on every page of this book. Even the cover, which introduces the burgeoning kaleidoscope of fun characters, messes around with the Puffin Books logo to have the iconic bird rudely poking its tongue out at a jaunty toad!
The Ha Ha Bonk Book is the best of its kind and not to be missed.