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Reviews Written by
hfffoman (Kent)
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Come for a Ride on the Ghost Train
Come for a Ride on the Ghost Train
by Colin Hawkins
Edition: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly good, 21 Jun. 2015
As another reviewer says, it doesn't have a proper story and is designed for very young children. Nevertheless my family had a lot of fun with it. The pictures are spooky - more silly than genuinely terrifying. To give an idea of the words I have copied half the book below. If it sounds feeble I can say that it gives fantastic scope for reading with silly voices and the children loved it. The best testament is that my copy is held together with sellotape.

Come for a ride on the ghost train
In the dark tunnel you will
scream!
Over the loathsome pit you will
Shriek!
Out in the slimy swamp you will
Squeal!
Deep in the scary forest you will
Hhowl!


The Quarreling Book
The Quarreling Book
by Charlotte Zolotow
Edition: Paperback
Price: £4.52

1.0 out of 5 stars A bad buy, 21 Jun. 2015
This review is from: The Quarreling Book (Paperback)
I bought this on the strength of the amazon.com reviews and was completely underwhelmed. It is cheap and small with crude black and white illustrations. The children showed zero interest in it. There are so many wonderful children's books available, don't waste your time on this one


How to Count Crocodiles
How to Count Crocodiles
by Margaret Mayo
Edition: Unknown Binding

5.0 out of 5 stars First rate stories for reading aloud to young children, 20 Jun. 2015
This review is from: How to Count Crocodiles
This book comprises 8 stories based on folk tales about animals from around the world. The pictures are colourful and bold and occupy about half the space of its 76 pages. (please note my copy has a different cover so may not be quite the same).

I give a strong recommendation because the stories are unusual (I had never encountered any of them) and all have a clever twist or special wisdom. It is many years since I read these to my children and I still chuckle over the tortoise who learned to fly and the cat who wanted to be big.


The Orchard Book of Nursery Stories
The Orchard Book of Nursery Stories
by Sophie Windham
Edition: Paperback

3.0 out of 5 stars Ok but not my best recommendation, 20 Jun. 2015
This is a straight forward telling of classic stories such as The Three Little Pigs, Goldilocks, The Elves and the Shoemaker, The Ugly Duckling, Little Red Riding Hood (and 10 more).

It has 96 pages with largish print and an average of one smallish illustration per page.

I give it 3 stars meaning it is "ok". I much preferred How to Count Crocodiles by Margaret Mayo which is a similar format pitched at the same age.


Almaz and the Lion (Picture Puffin)
Almaz and the Lion (Picture Puffin)
by Jane Kurtz
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars One of my very favourite children's picture books, 20 Jun. 2015
My children (now grown up) were going through our old picture books in the attic today. Almaz and the Lion was not among them and yet was the title remembered and most wanted me to recommend.

It is like a variant of Androcles and the Lion only so much more subtle that I find it tragic that it is so little known. It is a beautiful story written with insight and compassion for village life in Africa and with a wisdom that will appeal to adults and children alike.

Please be aware that it has more words than the simplest picture books and won't appeal to the very youngest children


Animals in Art (I Spy)
Animals in Art (I Spy)
by Lucy Micklethwait
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.99

4.0 out of 5 stars A nice way to introduce young children to serious art, 19 Jun. 2015
This review is from: Animals in Art (I Spy) (Paperback)
This is a simple book comprising an I spy game and reproductions of famous artworks. It has 40 pages (20 artworks and 20 I spy challenges).

I recommend the book because the concept is good and the work is varied and well chosen. My children (who are now grown up and have today been going through old books in the attic) asked me to add that they preferred the art series of Laurence Anholt (e.g. Camille and the Sunflowers and Degas and the Dancer) because they preferred the story to the I spy game.


I Spy : Transport In Art
I Spy : Transport In Art
by Lucy Micklethwait
Edition: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 stars A nice way to introduce young children to serious art, 19 Jun. 2015
This is a simple book comprising an I spy game and reproductions of famous artworks. It has 40 pages (20 artworks and 20 I spy challenges).

I recommend the book because the concept is good and the work is varied and well chosen. My children (who are now grown up and have today been going through old books in the attic) asked me to add that they preferred the art series of Laurence Anholt (e.g. Camille and the Sunflowers and Degas and the Dancer) because they preferred the story to the I spy game.


Almost Famous Daisy
Almost Famous Daisy
by Richard Kidd
Edition: Paperback

3.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining (and silly) introduction to art for young children, 19 Jun. 2015
This review is from: Almost Famous Daisy (Paperback)
This is the story of a girl who travels the world and sends postcards home describing (and of course illustrating) a variety of famous art she encounters. The style is humorous and slightly silly. If you want to entertain your children and give them some exposure to serious art, in my view a much better option is the series by Laurence Anholt (e.g. Camille and the Sunflowers, Degas and the Dancer). I also recommend Transport and art and Animals in art by Lucy Micklethwait


Degas and the Little Dancer (Anholt's Artists)
Degas and the Little Dancer (Anholt's Artists)
by Laurence Anholt
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.99

5.0 out of 5 stars First rate story and art, 19 Jun. 2015
I love this book. It has a good story, related with compassion, it has beautiful artwork, and it is educational both about art and about the life of the artist.

Be aware that the serious subject matter makes it suitable for slightly older children than most picture stories. It is also quite wordy (150-200 words per double page). If you want to start with something easier, I suggest Camille and and the Sunflowers in the same series. It is very similar but simpler.


Camille and the Sunflowers (Anholt's Artists)
Camille and the Sunflowers (Anholt's Artists)
by Laurence Anholt
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.99

5.0 out of 5 stars This book has everything, 19 Jun. 2015
I love this book. It has a good story, related with compassion, it has beautiful artwork, and it is educational both about art and about the life of the artist. Be aware that the serious subject matter makes it suitable for slightly older children than most picture stories.


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