Sam Copeland’s debut, Charlie Changes into a Chicken is brilliant, laugh-out-loud funny and genuinely moving. I would recommend this book to readers of age 6 and upwards. I’m definitely older than 6 and I hooted with laughter when I read it.
However, Charlie Changes into a Chicken is more than a joyous romp of a read. Through its relentlessly hilarious narrative it ingeniously communicates an important message for children who struggle with anxiety or are confronted by difficulties in their life. In the story, the bonkers transformations into crazy creatures occur when Charlie panics. He has to try and find a way to cope with these moments. In this, the first book in a series, it is his older brother’s ill health that is making Charlie anxious.
A great debut is one that you feel must have always existed, and this is one of those books. Every school library needs to have multiple copies and may I recommend it to every single parent out there.
Since I read this book, Sam Copeland has managed to produce a follow up story about Charlie, called Charlie Changes into a T-Rex. It’s bound to be a belter and I hear there’s a third one in the works and a film deal too. Grab a copy as soon as you can.