Guess What? There’s a hippopotamus on the hospital Roof Eating Cake

I didn’t want to go to hospital. My big sister said, ‘My hippo knows all about hospitals. He can go with you.’ There’s a hippopotamus on our roof eating cake. And he’s going to hospital too. Everybody’s favourite hippopotamus is back in a wonderful new picture book sure to delight old and new fans of the cake-eating hippo. This much-loved and best-selling series has sold worldwide and been translated into several languages.

The hippopotamus helps and reassures during hospital visits, demystifying procedures and comforting overnight.

Hazel reading to patients at Ronald McDonald House, Parkville. Cake Angels donated the hippo cake.


ISBN: 9780143501374 p/b
Illustrator: Deborah Niland
Publisher: Puffin Penguin Books Australia
Film Adaptation: Pocket Bonfire: World Premiere: 2011 Edinburgh Film Festival international screening.

Chinese translations: Children’s Publishing of Sichuan Province (educators using translated copies)
Classroom Playscripts &  Hippo activities: Bushfire Press
Format: Paperback

Visit your local bookshop or these online retailers have copies available now – just click through on the direct link and you can purchase online:

To celebrate the anniversary of the original Hippopotamus book, Puffin created some fun Hippo Party materials. Visit the Puffin website or download the items here.

The Little Big Book Club have also prepared a comprehensive Classroom Activity Sheet. Click here to download a copy

The Hippopotamus series  can provide an imaginative and fun theme for the kindergarten, classroom and the school community as a whole. (Click here to look at Our Hippo Classroom Plays). A range of resources are available for download below. Enjoy!

You can find more resources and classroom ideas for all of Hazel’s Books by clicking through to the Teachers Resources Page.

Chinese translations of all picture books Children’s Publishing House of Sichuan Province.

Guess What? There’s a Hippopotamus on the Hospital Roof Eating Cake! is listed as approved reading on Premiers’ Reading Challenges throughout Australia:

Have you read ‘Guess What? There’s a Hippopotamus on the Hospital Roof Eating Cake’?

Here are some of the comments received:

My Mum read this to me before I went to hospital. Things weren’t so scary then.’

‘We keep a copy in the class library for when students might be going to hospital, so others will understand.’

‘Most frequently ‘nicked’ book from our clinic waiting room.’

‘As a nurse and parent, I’ve found this book helps in the waiting times at medical appointments.’

‘The hippo friend  is very comforting. He knows everything.’

‘It’s a funny book. I like when he slides on his bottom.’

OAM Association Talk:
May 11th “Not Just a Piece of Cake: Being an Author” Will be on You Tube soon.

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Student Resources:
Crafting an assignment on Hazel Edwards? Get tips for school projects, and her uniquely answered questions

See all Resources