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A Fuse #8 Production
Inside A Fuse #8 Production

Fuse 8 n’ Kate: Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae, ill. Guy Parker-Rees

I wanted to do a little something different with today’s selection for my podcast. Today’s book has been on Publisher Weekly’s top selling picture book list for 240+ weeks. Even so, it is not a household name here in America by any stretch of the imagination. I’d been seeing its name on these bestseller lists for years so finally I decided to bite the bullet and hand the title over to Kate. Kate, for her part, comes up with all kinds of interesting observations. She speculates as to whether or not Gerald is dancing to dubstep (and graces us with her dubstep imitation), notes the fact that Gerald is followed by bugs and turtles everywhere he goes, and finds herself a new tattoo contender. Who could possibly ask for more?

Listen to the whole show here on Soundcloud or download it through iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, PlayerFM, or your preferred method of podcast selection.

Show Notes:

Those of you curious about Kate’s dog’s long-lost brother, here is the newly reunited pair. I dunno. Do you see any resemblance?

Kate’s not wrong. This book begins with a female lion giving Gerald the hungry eye.

“My new tattoo is the warthog with the maracas.”

Yup. Mmm hmm. As Kate says, “In the ENTIRE continent of Africa, they hold a jungle dance.”

And here you can see, this is a very authentic African jungle. Yup. Can’t think of any reason at all why this could be a problem. That’s a 100% tropical African jungle, all right.

The moral center of this book is this turtle. He does not laugh. He does not mock. And yet, he is a creature that doesn’t even get his own name.

Bush baby or bat? You be the judge.

“He may be dancing, but judging from the expressions of the owl and the bat, it ain’t well.”

About Elizabeth Bird

Elizabeth Bird is currently the Collection Development Manager of the Evanston Public Library system and a former Materials Specialist for New York Public Library. She has served on Newbery, written for Horn Book, and has done other lovely little things that she'd love to tell you about but that she's sure you'd find more interesting to hear of in person. Her opinions are her own and do not reflect those of EPL, SLJ, or any of the other acronyms you might be able to name. Follow her on Twitter: @fuseeight.


  1. Mrs. Sympathetic Gremlin Fangirl says:

    [Imagine me rushing to the board book in my own children’s library to confirm my hunch.]

    Yep. Puh-leeze let Kate’s new tat picture a water buffalo rather than a warthog! Otherwise the whole world will misunderstand…