Bad Panda: Mites, Camera, Action! by Swapna Haddow

Bad Panda: Mites, Camera, Action! – at a glance

The School Reading Lists’ five word review: quality, kindness, chaotic, hilarious, series.
Children’s book title: Bad Panda: Mites, Camera, Action!
Children’s author: Swapna Haddow.
Children’s illustrator: Sheena Dempsey.
Genre: Funny illustrated story.
Published by: Faber Children’s.
ISBN: 9780571379279.
Recommended for children aged: 7-10 year-olds.
First published: Paperback March 2024.
This children’s book is ideal for: getting children engrossed in a book series.

Bad Panda: Mites, Camera, Action! by Swapna Haddow

To see the latest price or order, click on the book cover image.

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Our review:

Bruised bottoms and panda sausages, this book is sure to make 7 – 11-year-olds laugh.

A film crew comes into Lin’s (Bad Panda) zoo to make a film about the animals but finds them too boring and brings in actors instead. This angers Lin and antics begin when Lin tries to make the film herself to get a message to her brother. She’s not the only one with a message needing to be aired and eventually steps back for others with a greater need. This presents children with a ‘do the right thing’, element mixed with equality and kindness through a light, chaotic and hilarious story.

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The hard life of ants is covered in a fun and engaging way that children will love. Lin “littered the ground with green-leaf spitballs” – that “caused an unprecedented seismic activity for the ants”. An adventure packed with jokes, puns, absurdness and silliness will appeal to the age group this is aimed at.

Occasional illustrations of zoo animals with weird smiles and spa treatments, break up the reading and encourage the reader to imagine more visions of the antics.

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Funny expressions make reading captivating, like “curling up into a frightened panda ball” and Lin’s brother is referred to as “face like a bag of potatoes.” Rich and creative language such as grandpandas and rolling into a panda ball, show children how playing with words can be amusing.

This is a hilarious stand-alone story in itself but, there are others in the series. So, don’t be surprised if your child wants to read the rest of the series after they have finished.

Many thanks to Faber Children’s for the review copy.

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About Joanna Hadley

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I have worked within childcare for the past 34 years and have been a foster carer for ten of these years. My expertise is supporting traumatized children and their social and emotional health. I have used social stories to support children, build self esteem and to encourage interests. I have written two children's books. Website | Reviews by Joanna Hadley