No this is not your Disney movie - Kipling wrote a fantastic series of short stories, only a few of which include Mowgli. Baloo is not a lazy idiot, K...moreNo this is not your Disney movie - Kipling wrote a fantastic series of short stories, only a few of which include Mowgli. Baloo is not a lazy idiot, Kaa is not a bad guy, SherKahn is killed rather then run off, the wolves are not always the noble good guys... this is VERY different then our cotton candy Disney film. And so much more enjoyable for it.
Also included are the tales of Rikki Tikki Tavi, the Elephant Dance, and the White Seal. I would have to say that my favorite is Rikki Tikki Tavi, he's just so loveable and wonderful. There is a sense of magic in Kiplings animals, every reader will find themselves dreaming of being raised by wolves and taught the law of the jungle by Baloo.
I know that this was written as a children's book - but I have a hard time believing that my 11 year old son would be able to read and enjoy it, the beauty of the language will be lost on many of the younger readers who are used to the forward speaking newer YA books. But I would assume that by middle school they should be able to fully enjoy it.(less)
I love Gaiman's works, Corilane was one of my favorite children's books. I had high hopes for Mirrormask, we own the movie, and though it's a bit dark...moreI love Gaiman's works, Corilane was one of my favorite children's books. I had high hopes for Mirrormask, we own the movie, and though it's a bit dark for the younger children, it's still a very creative and visually stunning film.
After reading the book I'm glad that the movie was visually stunning. For some reason the book does not flow, or hold together well. Had I not seen the movie I would be completely lost in attempting to follow this book. The concept of standing on the books to cross the gorge, or the giants locked together, or the darkness and what it is doing - is all lost. Now you can say that it was for the simplicity of making it a children's book - but I don't buy it. The concepts involve possible death, a brain tumor, and an evil girl willing to sacrifice the entire world she lives in to try something new (not our main character - the bad guy).
The book follows a young girl who has grown up in a circus, she want's to live a normal life and gets in a argument with her mother about it. Her mother then collapses and is hospitalized with a brain tumor. Feeling quilty, Helena withdraws into a world of her strange artwork. That night she wakes up to find herself drawn into a world of her own creation - someone has stolen the mirrormask and traded places with her. Now she has to travel through a strange and hostile world ruled by a Queen of Light and a Queen of Darkness, to find the only way home - the stolen mirrormask.
The artwork was good and the concept is great - but to read it without having seen the movie will leave the reader a bit perplexed. If reading to children, go with one of Gaiman's other works before this one.(less)
Life as the middle sister can be tough, especially when your big sister is pretty and very very smart. It’s even tougher when your Mom is a waitress a...moreLife as the middle sister can be tough, especially when your big sister is pretty and very very smart. It’s even tougher when your Mom is a waitress and you have to teach everything you know to your little sister – even the things you don’t know.
PK is the middle sister, between Megan and Rabbit. Even though Megan is now “almost-a-teenager” and Rabbit is starting Kindergarten, everything seems to be going fine – until their Mom decides that they need to move into a bigger apartment. Suddenly everything PK knows and relies on is going to be left behind. The Big Blue Chair that they loved as if it were a family pet is too big to fit into the new apartment with the new sleeper sofa, and the built in hamper where all of PK’s magical stories come from – can’t come with them either. How can a new wicker basket hold all of the stories? It’s full of holes and all the stories would fall out!
“Maybe Yes, Maybe No, Maybe Maybe” is a sweet story about three little girls having to move and make what they consider a major life change. Told through the eyes of PK, we see how the girls learn not only to accept change, but also to learn how each of them is special in their own way. Though the voice of the story is young and the tale is geared toward 9-11 year olds, there are some large words that may require a lot of sounding out and some parental help defining. I don’t know of many young children who know what “repast” is. Even though they may have some difficulty with some of the words, I believe that most children will be able to identify with the characters and enjoy the book. This book will appeal mainly to girls, though if they are able to look past the three sisters as the main characters, boys may enjoy it as well since PK is a bit of a tomboy.
There is some talk of hormones and mention of a uterus as a female body part and it’s having to do with “becoming a woman” – though it is not fully explained. If you are against your child reading about that then you have been warned. There is nothing explicit nor will your child come away with any additional knowledge on that topic, but it may illicit questions that you will want to have answers for before they get to that point.
This is a sweet book that many kids can identify with and will enjoy reading. (less)
I had ordered this book long ago when on a whim I was determined to get all of Gaiman's books. I noticed that it was a childrens book so I mentally fi...moreI had ordered this book long ago when on a whim I was determined to get all of Gaiman's books. I noticed that it was a childrens book so I mentally filed it away. When I saw the advertisements for the movie... I knew that with a 7 year old I would have to watch the film and ripped the book off the shelf to make sure I'd read it before watching the film.
How weird it all is... I read it in just about a half an hour or so... and it was creepy. Little Coraline is bored... both of her parents work at home, but they are always busy with work and rarely have time to play with her. She wanders about their house (a flat converted from a much larger house) and visits with the neigbors. Even when she is visiting with the neighbors, they don't seem to really notice her, everyone talks at Coraline rather than to her. She enjoys exploring and eventually comes across a door in her flat that opens to a brick wall. Her mother explaines that it used to be a door that went into the neighboring flat, but now it's bricked up in case they rent it out.
Suddenly strange things crawl through the night, and a door that once lead to a wall of bricks, opens to a long dark hallway... to a world disturbingly similar to the one she just left... only with frightening and sinister undertones. Coraline shows her strength, intelligence, cunning and determination to find not only her parents, but also to get back home.
As an adult I thought to myself - this book will scare the crapola out of little ones! In the back Gaiman states that the book was frightening to adults and an exciting adventure to children. Perplexed, I handed it off to my 7 year old... expecting it to look as though it had been through a chipper shredder when handed back to me. Much to my surprise... not only did he read it, but there were no nightmares... he was thrilled with it and can't wait for the movie. I'm still perplexed as to how this book brings out such completely different emotions in children and adults. I don't know that the movie will be able to pull it off... I have a hunch that the movie might encourage leaving the light in the hallway on at night.
Still... if you are an adult, don't let that stop you from reading this wonderful book. I wouldn't compair it to Narnia other than a door opens into another world. Think of it more like Alice in Wonderland... and not the Disney version either... or The Wizard of Oz, focused on the scenes with the flying monkeys and the witch.
This was supposedly the first book I ever read by myself... to this day, it is one of my favorite children's stories available. Though hard to find I...moreThis was supposedly the first book I ever read by myself... to this day, it is one of my favorite children's stories available. Though hard to find I bought a copy for when I have kids.
The poor puppy in the window who wants a home and some friends, and gets a bit over-excited about digging. But he learns his lesson in the end and has a home and friends to boot!
The drawings are adorable, the words are pretty easy for little ones, it is a wonderful book for your children.(less)
This book may be marketed to YA or Children, but I can't think of a woman who wouldn't enjoy it - not that men won't like it, but it's just so rare to...moreThis book may be marketed to YA or Children, but I can't think of a woman who wouldn't enjoy it - not that men won't like it, but it's just so rare to find a story of a smart little girl who no one notices that ends up saving the world through her wits (and she saves the nasty old boy too).
Tiffany Aching is a wonderful addition to the Discworld pantheon, I avoided reading this for the longest time because I was so upset that it wasn't going to be about one of the groups I already loved (the Guards and the Witches) and I just couldn't imagine loving any new character as much as I loved them. But I should have had faith in Pratchett. Tiffany is wonderful, funny and the perfect little heroine for a tale including the Nac Mac Feegle. I can imagine little girls all over the world wishing they had the Wee Free Men on their side, and that they could go and save the world from an evil queen.
The story is funny, adventureous and forced me to stay up way too late at night to finish it in a single sitting. You don't have to have read any of the other Discworld books to read this one, and for those of you who are "anti-witchcraft" I would advise you read this before harping on it - Pratchett has a very different view of witchcraft then most...
I highly recommend this book - I wish I hadn't read it so that I could have the pleasure of reading it again for the first time.(less)