The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Water - Story Snug

The Crocodile Who Didn’t Like Water by Gemma Merino

The title of this story intrigued us, don’t all crocodiles like water?! We just had to read the story to find out why he didn’t like water. We love the surprise when we find out and now that we’re more familiar with the story we’ve found picture clues that indicate that the crocodile is different from his brothers and sisters.

The Story: A little crocodile longs to play with his brothers and sisters but he doesn’t like water and swimming. He buys himself a swimming ring and tries to join in but he can’t swim and when he jumps into the water he has to be rescued. He gets so cold that he sneezes and starts breathing fire. The little crocodile isn’t a crocodile, he’s a dragon who can fly and grows into a big dragon.

There is a clue as to why the little crocodile could be different in the wordless double spread that comes before the title page, a mother crocodile is carrying a basket of eggs. All are blue with the exception of a white one. The story comes full circle as the dragon also has a basket of eggs at the end, all are white except one blue one – could there be a sequel to the story? My daughter finds it sad that the little crocodile is lonely but his attempts to join in with his brothers and sisters are cute and very amusing. I love his determination and persistence to fit in before he realises that there is a reason that he is different. Even when they realise that he is a dragon his brothers and sisters accept him for who he is, this story celebrates his uniqueness and being different isn’t an issue.

The illustrations brilliantly and humorously portray the emotions of the little crocodile. His eyes convey some wonderfully woeful expressions and his loneliness is shown in the pictures e.g. sitting alone in a tree or watching his brothers and sisters in the bath. The text is short and simple and is an easy text for a beginner reader to read.

The Crocodile Who Didn’t Like Water is a lovely story to stimulate discussion about similarities and differences and how we all have different strengths and different personality traits. The little crocodile experiences a range of emotions e.g. loneliness, embarrassment so it would also be a great story to introduce discussion about how children feel in particular situations.

This simple, beautifully illustrated story subtly conveys an important message. We are happy that the little crocodile discovers his identity and that his story ends happily.

The Crocodile Who Didn’t Like Water has been shortlisted for the 2014 Waterstones Children’s Book Prize. It has also been translated into several languages.

Age Range: 2 +

Author / Illustrator: Gemma Merino

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21 responses to “The Crocodile Who Didn’t Like Water by Gemma Merino”

  1. Renee @ Mother Daughter Book Reviews avatar

    I love the creativity of the story and the spin of the crocodile being a dragon – very clever. There is so much potential for the lessons to be learned through the story. Sounds great! Thanks for joining us in the Kid Lit Blog Hop!

    1. Catherine avatar

      I guessed that there would be a twist in this story but I had no idea what it would be before I read it.

  2. My Life As A Mummy avatar
    My Life As A Mummy

    Another book that needs to go on my to buy list for Cameron!

    Thanks for sharing

    Laura x x x

    1. Catherine avatar

      You’re welcome – I have a huge to buy list!

  3. Lesley @ Australian Picture Books avatar

    This sounds like a fun book and I also love how it can lead to discussions on the important issues of feelings and strengths. Thanks Catherine

    1. Catherine avatar

      It’s great how a simple story can deliver such a strong message.

  4. Kirsty avatar

    This is a fantastic book and it might be on my list to cover too! The illustrations and the story compliment each other beautifully and it is a very enjoyable story for children. Thank you for joining in with #kidsbookaweek

    1. Catherine avatar

      I look forward to reading your review Kirsty 🙂

  5. Reshama avatar

    This theme is always a hit with children’s picture books 🙂 The art on this also looks super cute ! Thanks for sharing the review on Kidlit Bloghop. I am going to look out for this one.
    -Reshama @ Stackingbooks

  6. Maria avatar

    Oh, what a wonderful story! Indeed a great way to talk to kids about different people and appreciating each other’s differences. Thank you for sharing it on the Kid Lit Blog Hop! Sharing on Twitter.


    1. Catherine avatar

      Thank you for visiting Story Snug and sharing the post Maria 🙂

  7. Julie Grasso avatar

    Oh this looks brilliant, I saw the cover the other day somewhere and thought, very cute, now you have convinced me we must request it at the library. Thanks so much for a great recommendation and for joining the Kid Lit Blog HOp

    1. Catherine avatar

      Thank you for hopping over here too 🙂

  8. Sally Spratt avatar

    Sounds like a great book. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Catherine avatar

      You’re welcome, thank you for visiting Story Snug 🙂

  9. Kriss MacDonald avatar

    Another wonderful book Catherine! I especially like how you explain his brothers and sisters still accept him although he is different from them. A great way to explain to kids how you can be unique and still loved.

    1. Catherine avatar

      The Little Crocodile’s brothers and sisters get to fly on his back once he’s a fully grown dragon, having a dragon for a brother is fun 🙂

  10. Aileen Stewart avatar

    Stopping by from the blog hop to say hello. This book sound really interesting and a good way to share with children that it’s okay to be different.

    1. Catherine avatar

      Thank you Aileen. I like the way that the message about being different is conveyed very subtly.

  11. Barbara Mojica avatar

    I will be looking for this one for my grandchildren. Thanks for sharing, Catherine.

    1. Catherine avatar

      You’re welcome. I hope your grandchildren like it 🙂