The Big Sneeze is a gentle book about friendship. Author Mark Carthew's musical and songwriting skills are evident in the rhythm which make it an excellent read aloud or perform aloud book. My 6 year old test reader LOVED the escalating sounds of the sneezes as he knows that an exclamation mark means LOUDER. So it's the type of picture book that can become a family experience of reading aloud. Lots of 'noisy' words which involve beginning readers anticipating phrases. Well designed endpapers which get my tick for a thoughtfully constructed picture book. Only on a second reading did I realize that families with allergies may find this book a great discussion starter. The mice characters are personable in Simon Prescott's illustrations. Check out humorous details in the background. And the recipe for 'How To Cure Sneezes' and the letter sealed with a paw. As a primary teacher and a musician, Mark Carthew's skills with language are evident. Highly commended. My only qualm is the M mouse names like Marvin and Marigold which I'm sure will be shortened to M& M. by regular readers.