Llama Glamarama by Simon James Green, illustrated by Garry Parsons

Publication Date: 4 June 2020

The Blurb

Larry loves to groove and mooooove … but will the others disapprove?

Larry the llama’s big secret is that late at night, when no one is watching, he loves to DANCE. Then, one day, he stumbles upon the Llama Glamarama! Will this raucous celebration give Larry the pride he needs to bring his dance back home?

The Review

Joyous from start to finish and a delight to read aloud, Llama Glamarama is a bright, bold exploration of believing in yourself and being proud of what makes you you.

Told in verse, the reader is as likely to be toe-tapping and head-bopping along, as Larry is to dance his way through life, once he realises he has nothing to hide from his fellow flock mates. His journey there is painful to see at times, which allows for conversation with younger children around how we can be better friends to people so they don’t need to hide parts of themselves away.

Garry Parsons brilliantly bold illustrations capture the humour and rhythm of the story to hilarious effect, showcasing the emotions felt by the characters, whether llama or not. His muted spread of our disheartened dancing hero is both beautiful and heartbreaking.

A must for schools to share the message that we should take pride in what makes us different, and help those who hide parts of themselves to feel proud of who they are, and a brilliant book to read for fun because, quite frankly, it’s even funnier than Ed Balls attempting Gangnam Style but in all the right ways.

The Dance Party Challenge

This was more challenging than I thought it would be. At least you don’t actually have to see me dance. That would be challenging for everyone…

  1. What’s your favourite dance move?

So you’ve seen Dirty Dancing right? That bit at the end where Johnny and Baby do the lift? It’s that. In my dreams…

2. Favourite song to groove to?

Oh there are so many, but Human by the Killers is right up there, usually as an interpretive dance if I’m honest. But generally, stick on some 70s disco or 80s pop and I’m there. I once had a lie-on-the-floor-face-down tantrum because a DJ in an 80s Club refused to play Superman by Black Lace after he’d played Wham for a full half hour! (It wasn’t all that long ago and I don’t believe all photographic evidence has been destroyed. Oh, and tantrums work, no wonder toddlers use them.)

3. Favourite song for a slow dance?

Slow-what-now? The closest I come to a slow dance is when I’m at a concert, arms in the air or around the shoulders of the people you love, belting it out at max volume, because it’s so loud no one can hear you anyway, or having a night out in with my best girls in the kitchen. In those circumstances it would have to be Beautiful War by Kings Of Leon, Dark Roman Wine by Snow Patrol, and with my best girls we always end the night on The Story by Brandi Carlisle.

4. Ballet or hip-hop?

Ballet! Have you ever seen the video for Take Me To Church by Hozier featuring Sergei Polunin directed by David LaChapelle? Just wow!

5. Jive or tango?

Jive, jive and then some more jive. Me Dad taught me when I was little and we still jive together now.

6. Flossing or flamenco?                

Flamenco darling – flossing is banned, and yes, that was my teacher voice.

Now that’s over with, it’s time to hand over to Simon James Green for the next section of the Llama Glamarama Dance Party Tour, and each and every one of these would see me heading to the dance floor. I got the…

CHEESE OVERLOAD

No need to feel guilty about any of these pleasures! Everyone loves a bit of cheese, and my top five are an absolute fondue of delights!

MmmBop – Hanson

Super Trouper – ABBA

The Lion Sleeps Tonight – Tight Fit

Go West – The Pet Shop Boys

Girls Just Wanna Have fun – Cyndi Lauper

Here’s a link to the full ‘Llama Glamarama Dance Party Tour’ playlist: 

Huge thanks to Scholastic for inviting me to take part in the Llama Glamarama Dance Party Tour. Do make sure you check out all of the other dance parties…

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