I didn't really enjoy this but my kids love it. They are 4 and 2 and they happily sit through the entire book (which takes about 10-15minutes to read)I didn't really enjoy this but my kids love it. They are 4 and 2 and they happily sit through the entire book (which takes about 10-15minutes to read). It is lengthy and not all pages have pictures, but they snuggle up and enjoy it, so for that reason it gets 3-stars.
The writing is uninteresting and follows an obvious line for each story (Mercy the pig goes to bed, something bad happens, Mercy wants to eat buttered toast and somehow in her quest to eat toast she manages to save the day... and then everyone eats buttered toast at the end).
Loved this book. I found it in the YA section of the library when I was trolling for some younger fiction. How long has it been hiding there?!?
This isLoved this book. I found it in the YA section of the library when I was trolling for some younger fiction. How long has it been hiding there?!?
This is a good quality fantasy/dystopian novel. It was in the young adult section but I really am not sure why. The protagonist is a child but all of her companions are much older.
Both the plot and the world are built slowly and skillfully as the book progresses. It is a pleasant change to read a book of this genre that does not dump everything into the first chapter. It is pleasant reading a book of this genre that is not a romance novel dressed up as lamb. I loved learning more and more about the characters as the novel progressed.
The writing is simple, perhaps this is why it is in the YA section, however this simplicity added to my enjoyment. I read every word, I neither skimmed nor skipped, nothing seemed wasted. I was never subjected to a description of the colour of the protagonist's hair, or the beauty of her smile. The book just told the story and allowed me to imagine the details.
I am trying very hard not to describe the plot because the author did such a fantastic job of weaving the details throughout the entire book that I don't want to give anything away. I feel just naming the genre has given too much away. It isn't that there were great plot twists, but there was a sense of satisfaction on learning things. The discoveries felt right, as if they were something you had always known. I liked that.
I am so very impressed with this book (have I said that enough yet?). I am so very glad that I borrowed the sequel at the same time (and kudos to the people who wrote 'Book 1' on the cover, all trilogies should be required to do this so that the reader knows!!).
Oh and for all those people who thought The Selection had good cover art (not me)... I want to say that this book has good cover art... my kind of cover art. I could stare at that cover for a long time just imagining the world that Eaton has built.
Oh and (pps?) it is set in a place like Australia... brilliant....more
The Faraway tree series is a really amazing set of books. They are about three children who work incredibly hard helping their mother and when they caThe Faraway tree series is a really amazing set of books. They are about three children who work incredibly hard helping their mother and when they can some time to themselves they free-range into the enchanted wood.
From a free-range kids perspective, I love the way the kids are allowed to roam free, and I love how they think about safety (eg, in the excerpt below Jo talks about getting to know the woods before roaming too far into them). I love the way the mother sends them off with baskets of food so they can go out all day, I love that she isn't overly fazed by a weird man who appears on there doorsteps. I love that she goes out for the day and tells them to have some friends over for tea.... GREAT books series.
I love the levels of fantasy in these childrens books. Fairies, goblins, talking animals, enchanted clocks.
An excerpt from "The Enchanted Wood" by Enid Blyton.
"You can take your tea out to-day," said Mother. "You've worked well, all of you, and you deserve a picnic. I'll cut you some sandwiches, and you can take a bottle of milk." "We'll go to the Wood!" whispered Bessie to the others, and with excited faces and beating hearts they helped their mother to pack their tea into a big basket. They set off. There was a small gate at the bottom of their back garden that led into the overgrown lane running by the wood. They unlatched the gate and stood in the lane. They could see the trees in the wood, and hear them talking their strange tree-talk: "Wisha-wisha-wisha-wisha!" "I feel as if there are adventures about," said Jo. "Come on! Over the ditch we go - and into the Enchanted Wood". "Don't let's go too far," said Jo. "We had better wait till we know the paths a bit better before we go deep into the wood. Look about for a good place to sit down and have our sandwiches, girls."
Mother and the children stared at the queer Old Saucepan Man as he came in at the gate. He wore an extra-large-sized saucepan for a hate, and as he came, he knocked two pans together, and sang a queer nonsense song... "Whoever is he?" said Mother, in wonder. "Children, is this queer old man all right?" "Oh yes," said Jo, hoping that Mother wouldn't ask too many questions. "Can we take him into the garden and talk to him, Mother? He makes such a noise indoors." "Very well," said Mother, who wanted to get on with her washing. "Take him along."
One day Mother said that she would be out for the whole day, and, if the children liked, they could have the Old Saucepan Man to tea, and any other two friends they had made.
I am a bit confused about who this book is aimed at. The plot was simple but enjoyable and the writing of some of the characters was surprsingly subtlI am a bit confused about who this book is aimed at. The plot was simple but enjoyable and the writing of some of the characters was surprsingly subtle. However the book was very short, 160 pages and the text was double-spaced throughout the book, making me wonder if the author was writing for older children. I honestly could have read the entire book in a matter of an hour or two. I think if I was a reader from the target audience I might have rated it as 4-stars, but instead my 3-star rating reflects where it fits amongst my other books.
I generally do not enjoy first person dialogue, so I struggle to enjoy the book at first. There was a lot of dialoge and I found myself mentally rewriting some of the unnessecary dialogue out. I think a bit more of it could have been told rather than spoken, especially in the opening four to five chapters.
I was impressed with the way she wrote her characters. They had a great deal of depth and she didn't give the reader all the answers. I am believing it was intentional.
For example, I liked the way the character Gilhey was introduced to us by the protaganist. The protaganist clearly disliked him and believed him to be a bad person. The protaganist offered no proof, allowing the reader to have some doubt. Later when we get our first glimpse of Gilhey we do see he does not like her, but we also see the she behaves in a childish antagonistic manner toward him, perhaps deserving his distain. I was impressed that the author gave me room to think that the protagonist was wrong about him. [I was about 35% of the way through the book when I wrote those notes and at that point was not entirely sure about him... I like that the author has allowed me room to wonder.]
The story itself was intricate enough to have me guessing and doubting at various points during the book. I am not actually convinced that the author intended this, but I like to believe she did.
One thing I did not like was that it was set in Ireland 350 AD... I think the time and place was not needed. Likewise I think the glossary of words at the back was a bit of an insult to the reader, especially in a world where Google is at our fingertips. I enjoyed reading her strange phrases and figuring out what they meant by the context that they were used in. Those are little things though.
Overall I enjoyed the book. It was a quick read and I would recommend it to any older children/young teenagers who were interested in historical fiction.
I received this book as an ARC from the goodreads program....more
As far as YA dystopian/romtopians go this one is pretty good, but that is because YA dystopian/romptopians generally tend to be sub-par.
I just spent tAs far as YA dystopian/romtopians go this one is pretty good, but that is because YA dystopian/romptopians generally tend to be sub-par.
I just spent ten minutes writing a review for the wrong book, so clearly this one doesn't stick in the mind that much. At least, now that I remember what book I am reading, it is better then the book I orginally thought I was reviewing (still following?).
So I love the idea that at a given age everyone is matched with their partners in a public ceremony of arranged marriages.
A lot of the freedoms in this world are a bit hard to swallow, but it is readable. I have read the second book, which was not as good, but will still happily read the third (which I believe has been released, I probably even pre-ordered the e-book, but still isn't that high on my reading list)....more
This is a fun fairy tale mashup disappointing only because the author failed to wrap up any of the story lines. You won't find out how Prince PhillipThis is a fun fairy tale mashup disappointing only because the author failed to wrap up any of the story lines. You won't find out how Prince Phillip finds his Sleeping Beauty or why there is a little fairy in the Princess's hair. You won't learn who the Princess really is or see the Wicked Queen defeated. You won't see Jack discover his inner hero or find out the identity of his mysterious mentor. The book just ends with everything unfinished. Possibly the author thinks he is being clever but in actuality it is just unsatisfying. Books have endings.
The book sets out to be a Fun little tale about a modern girl suddenly finding herself magically transported into the world of fairytales. She is joined on her adventure by Jack, son of the man who climbed the beanstalk and Phillip a dashing prince destined to awake sleeping beauty. This story has lots of fun playing with the well-known fairy tales.
The book was quiet fun until the ending drew near and it became increasingly obvious that there was not enough room to wrap up all the storylines. The story fails to provide any ending at all leaving the reader wondering what happened to the second part of the book???
Two stars because the book was fun. It would have been a three or four star book had the author provided an ending... still kind of flabbergasted at the appropriateness of selling half a book...presumably just to be clever?...more
This is one of those books that is enjoyed from beginning to end. I bought it on a whim, trying to encourage myself to read some novels outside of myThis is one of those books that is enjoyed from beginning to end. I bought it on a whim, trying to encourage myself to read some novels outside of my generally areas of interest, and was very pleased with the choice.
Not only is it an excellent story it sheds some interesting incite into the world of a Autistic young man. Even from the way the book is written. It is written as if it were a true story being written by the Autistic protaganist. He explains that he has to write a story and as he struggles with fiction he will just write about what is happening in his life.
I enjoyed the humour in the book, particular as I know it was not intended by the proposed author. It both reminds me and sheds light on my personal experience with an autistic student. I always loved his sense of humour, so dry and adult. It was interesting to realise that his humour was never intended, not in the way I might say a dry and witty remark, it was always just the side effect of his communications. It made me wonder if it was a saving grace, his unintended dry humour served to make him very likeable to the adults around him.
One of the stand out scenes in the book is when a police officer, suspecting he is lost, approaches him at a railway station. A conversation ensues but the stand out is when the boy warns the police officer not to touch him as he got a caution for hitting a policeman... and if I do it again I'll get into even bigger trouble. The police officer's response shows sense. He has clearly recognised that the boy is mentally different and responds accordingly. It was a small scene but it stood out to me.
The story of three children who survived for eight days lost in the Australian bush. The children walked over 100km before they were eventually foundThe story of three children who survived for eight days lost in the Australian bush. The children walked over 100km before they were eventually found by their father and some Aboriginal trackers.
I would not say the book was terribly written. The author admits to making some embellishments (in ways that do not affect the story) and these are obvious within the first page. The children are stereotypes and the mother would be at home on a tv show such as "7th heaven" or "full house" she is so obviously perfect.
I am not even sure why I am bothering to review a children's book. I think it is because I find it annoying when children's literature is so condescending... does it have to be that way?
I am trying to build a small collection of Australian historical literature. I will seek this book out to buy as it did tell the story correctly, and it did make me cry in the end....more
Written in the form of letters to various people, I find the wriing style a little annoying. However the plot is sweet, making the book a nice quick rWritten in the form of letters to various people, I find the wriing style a little annoying. However the plot is sweet, making the book a nice quick read....more