Puffin the Architect is a children’s story that leads the reader through a wonderful series of illustrations of elaborate homes designed for animals, in the search for the perfect design for title character Puffin’s latest client. The new clients are unimpressed by the procession of evermore fanciful houses designed for other animal clients.
What’s revealed as the book progresses is the discerning clients are the Pufflings, who are the children (chicks) with their architect mother. They want a house designed specifically for them, rather than something which has been designed for someone else, no matter how wonderful.
I read this book to two girls, aged two and four, and although the two-year-old was somewhat nonplussed by it, the four-year-old enjoyed it. Elements of the story suit younger children, given that it is repetitive and colourful with illustrations of animals as well as buildings, which adds a sense of whimsy and fun without becoming overbearingly childish or difficult for the reader. However, this book would benefit from a slightly older audience, as the intricacy of the pictures would benefit from an older imagination and an attention to detail.
This is a great story with fantastical and beautifully drawn illustrations, and one (given my own profession as an architect), that I would highly recommend to others to read to their children or grandchildren. The book suits the reader as well as the listener and as such can be read more frequently than some of the more inane and nonsensical equivalents. Thoroughly recommend.
Puffin the Architect by Kimberley Andrews.