Batty – a little bat that wants to be noticed

Bats don’t really make the cute list like koalas, the funny list like meerkats and nor do they have the wow factor of animals like lions. So how does Batty, an insecure and sweet little bat who’s desperate for a bit of attention, get his moment of glory at the zoo?

Batty, the latest from author Sarah Dyer (we previously reviewed her funny story, Monster Day at Work), will go a long way in improving the somewhat shady reputation of bats.

In the zoo where Batty lives, it’s certain animals that pull the crowds – you know the type (probably because they’re first on the list when you visit the zoo) – the lions, the penguins, the gorillas and so on. All Batty can do is hang upside down. So he decides that he needs to make an extra effort to impress and drops in on some other animal enclosures to see if he can improve his status.

He visits the penguin pool where his diving fails to impress, overheats when lying in the sun with the lazy lions, doesn’t enjoyed being ‘nit-picked’ by the gorillas and don’t even mention the bird aviary – all that tweeting is a nightmare for Batty with his ultra-sensitive hearing. Dejected, Batty returns to his home – but wait! Batty is surprised and happy to discover some friends ‘hanging out’ to see him!

I really like Dyer’s flat drawing style and the quirky touches such as the lions with their sunscreen close at hand. Some of the pictures in Batty are upside down and others are the right way up – this neat trick will appeal to children’s sense of fun (and it also provides a very literal interpretation of the theme of how you see the world). The overarching message is about being true to who you are and the delivery is spot-on.

Batty is available online for $10.09 from Fishpond.

Katrina Whelen

Katrina studied planning and design, did the hard yards working in a big office building and then traded it all in for a relaxing (!) life at home with four children. She now fills her time with writing, completing a degree in genetics and taxiing her children around Melbourne to their various sporting commitments (not necessarily in that order).

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