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  • Writer's picturePicture Book Snob

This little puffling will run away with your heart

Where are you, Puffling? by Erika McGann and Gerry Daly, O'Brien Press

Just when you thought this cuddly little Puffling couldn't get any cuter, along comes a tiny board book format. Perfect for little hands to hold and practically indestructible, this makes an ideal gift for a baby or toddler. We have the Irish language version too (read a review) and were delighted when this mini edition popped through the letterbox.

This adorable adventure takes readers to Ireland's Skellig Michael (where parts of the Star Wars movie franchise were filmed). This island is one of only two UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the Republic of Ireland. Once inhabited by monks who built unusual stone dwellings dating back to the 6th century, it's now populated by a wealth of wildlife. Where Are You Puffling? celebrates this rich natural landscape and is filled with fascinating and attractive animals that will appeal to the very young.

An abridged version of the bestselling original, this is the tale of a young puffin who goes missing one morning. Her parents search everywhere, calling 'Where are you, Puffling?' They encounter lots of creatures who help with their enquiries. Meanwhile, the reader can see the mischievous little Puffling running around in the background.

Little readers love repetition and being in on the joke, so hearing the puffin parents' catchphrase and being able to spot Puffling over and over again will appeal to the very young. As will the shorter text and Gerry Daly's bright and cheerful artwork, and of course, the cast of cuddly characters.

We are mad about Puffling and even though we barely hear her speak, she is full of personality. Her fuzzy feathers and wide-eyed, open-mouthed expressions are extremely endearing and all her poses are hilarious. This would make a wonderful souvenir for anyone visiting Ireland from abroad and would also be fabulous gift for Irish families living away from home. I can't imagine anyone not falling in love with Puffling!

Where Are You, Puffling? was originally published in 2019, this new abridged board book version was released in February 2022. Thanks so much to the lovely people in O'Brien Press for sharing this story with us.


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