In some ways Beegu is my favourite type of heroine. She’s an alien and nine times out of ten these anthropomorphic characters are male. But not Beegu. And there is no special attributes because of her gender: she doesn’t want to be a princess or like ponies. The story would be just the same if she were a he, which is what makes it so refreshing.
The tale is conventional enough – alien crashes to earth, feels alone, befriends children, goes back home – but the familiar narrative is spruced up by arresting illustrations by Alexis Deacon. And the reader identifies with Beegu, even though she in turn has a rather pessimistic view of human beings.
Beegu was named after of a dog of Deacon’s but he says he also likes its alien ‘beep beep’ connotation and that it sounds like bijou – a little shiny jewel. Beegu is a simple creature, drawn with few features (three eyes, two antennae, long ears) which makes her desire to fit in all the easier to identify with.
Heroine rating: 3/5