Wednesday 15 February 2012

The Goblin and the Girl by Neil Irani

The Power Of The Mirror
Review by The Mole

The Girl has a mirror which whenever she looks in it all she sees is a goblin. Frightened that other people will see the goblin too she hides her face behind a large hat and avoids people until one day when The Boy talks to her in a friendly way and she can't hide from him.

One thing that surprised me in this book is that "The Girl" and "The Boy" don't have names. It's something that I hadn't noticed until I re-read it and the more I think about it the more relevant this idea actually is.

While the pictures (by Park Yun) are powerful they also manage to catch the mood very well of The Girl as the story progresses.

My only concern is if a child on their own could catch the true understanding of the important subject that this book covers, so I feel that at some point it needs to be shared and talked about. Self-esteem. Perhaps one of the earliest character developments that can shape a person for many years. The book is written such that if it is shared with a child and discussed it can be used to show that 'the quiet child in the class' should be talked to and treated kindly even if not actually befriended by everyone or it can be used to show a shy child that they don't look like a goblin and are perfectly normal and that they can talk and play with other children.

A beautifully drawn and well scripted book for sharing and discussing.

Publisher - Maverick Books
Genre - Children's Early Reader

Buy The Goblin and the Girl from Amazon


  1. Basically this book teaches girls that if they have low self esteem, they need a boy to be validated. It's actually a pretty disturbing message and certainly not one I would read to a vulnerable girl- or any child at all.

    1. I see your point but I also feel that if the author had chosen a girl they would have drawn other criticisms - and at the age that these children are then boy/girl is a little irrelevant - In My Opinion.