The Barnabus Project | Book Review

The Barnabus Project is a heartwarming story with the message of courage, friendship and loving yourself the way you are. You will fall in love with Barnabus’ spirit as he shows us that anything is truly possible!
– Momma Braga


In a world built for Perfect Pets, Barnabus is a Failed Project, half mouse, half elephant, kept out of sight until his dreams of freedom lead him and his misfit friends on a perilous adventure.

Deep underground beneath Perfect Pets, where children can buy genetically engineered “perfect” creatures, there is a secret lab. Barnabus and his friends live in this lab, but one of them is perfect. They are all Failed Projects. Barnabus has never been outside his tiny bell jar, yet he dreams of one day seeing the world above ground that his pal Pip the cockroach has told him about: a world with green hills and trees, and buildings that reach all the way to the sky, lit with their own stars. But Barnabus may have to reach the outside world sooner than he thought, because the Green Rubber Suits are about to recycle all Failed Projects…and Barnabus doesn’t want to be made into a fluffier pet with bigger eyes. He just wants to be himself. So he decides it’s time for him and the others to escape.

With his little truck and a lot of cooperation and courage, Barnabus sets out to find freedom –and a place where he and his friends can finally be accepted for who they are.


The Barnabus Project  brings a heartfelt story full of compassion, courage, teamwork, friendship and self-love. This captivating story and illustrations will give you all the feels as you cheer on Barnabus and his friends.

It truly is really hard not to fall in love with Barnabus as he is absolutely perfect the way he is. Barnabus’ spirit that anything is possible and with his strength to help him and his friends escape, is the hero we are always looking for in books. We are shown what is possible with the determination to truly succeed!

This is why for this #MelAndNikkiReview, we are giving this book 10 stars out of 5! It blew off our rating chart! After reading this story, we had a chance to talk about it and we listed all the amazing qualities Barnabus had that made him perfect. We talked about his fighting spirit; helpful to his friends; kindness to everyone; and loving himself for who he is. Being able to use this story to touch upon all those points was great as I want to make sure those are qualities we look for in people as well. 🙂

If you would like to add this book to your reading lineup (perfect gift idea), click here.

About the Authors

Terry Fan received his formal art training at Ontario College of Art and Design in Toronto. His work is a blend of traditional and contemporary techniques, using ink or graphite mixed with digital. He spends his days (and nights) creating magical paintings, portraits and prints. Together with his brother Eric, he wrote and illustrated the critically-acclaimed picture book, The Night Gardener.

Eric Fan is one of the internationally renowned Fan Brothers whose picture books include The Barnabus ProjectThe Night Gardener and Ocean Meets Sky. Eric and Terry also illustrated the Chris Hadfield-penned picture book The Darkest Dark, Dashka Slater’s The Antlered Ship and Beth Ferry’s The Scarecrow. Recipients of the prestigious Sendak Fellowship, they have received a Governor General’s Literary Award and the Dilys Evans Founder’s Award from the Society of Illustrators, and were also shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal among other honors.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

*Please note that this book was provided in exchange of an honest review. All opinions expressed are our own.

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