Customer Reviews


235 Reviews
5 star:
 (165)
4 star:
 (36)
3 star:
 (25)
2 star:
 (5)
1 star:
 (4)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


50 of 53 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Highway Rat
This book was inspired by the poem, "The Highwayman" by Alfred Noyes. The Highway Rat was a 'baddie' and a 'beast' - he robbed all the animals of their food, even his own horse of his hay. Eventually, all the animals are thin and hungry and the Highway Rat was 'horribly fat'. Then, when he tries to rob a duck she has nothing to steal, so he decides to eat her. The...
Published on 27 Aug. 2011 by S Riaz

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable enough,but not their best work.
With two boys under five, you can bet that we've read pretty much all of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler's books. To be honest The Highway Rat isn't one of our favourites in the series. It's not a bad Children's book, simply not as remarkable as some of its predecessors. The character of The Highway Rat is simply not as likeable or as charming as other characters in...
Published on 14 Nov. 2012 by Curlynob


‹ Previous | 1 2 324 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars He's got a sword!, 16 Jan. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Highway Rat (Hardcover)
We have quite a few of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler books for our 2 year old - they are definately his favourites. I think it's in the way they rhyme so it enables you as an adult to be very creative when reading them out. In this one however I did notice that the highway rat seemed to be a more 'exciting' character than the other animals and our child being fascinated by his sword and saddle bags - so I think perhaps he needs to be a bit older in order to make use of the moral behind the story. The other thing was the ending wrapping up really quickly and no explanation of why or how the rat ended up where he did - no matter though since it gives you freedom to make what you want of the ending to suit.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful parody of the Alfred Noyes classic!, 4 Feb. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Highway Rat (Hardcover)
Julia Donaldson is a wonderful writer and both my children love her stories and the clever use of rhyme and rhythm which carries the young (and fully-grown!) reader along with her vividly imagined tales. This, in my opinion, is her best story to date. As someone who once had to learn the Alfred Noyes original ('The Highwayman') by heart, the way that Donaldson has updated the story - with a far more 'kid-friendly' content! - whilst still managing to echo the rhythm and cadence of Noyes' work, added to the joy of reading this with my children. As ever, this is beautifully (and wittily!) illustrated and destined to be a classic for years to come ... Worth learning off by heart in fact!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beg, borrow or steal a copy! (Or order your own from Amazon!), 23 Mar. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Highway Rat (Hardcover)
We love the Highway Rat!

It's difficult to pick out a 'best' from Julia's huge catalogue of children's literature, but I think this may just be it!!

It has a great story, with marvellous rhyme and rich language.

It make's our toddler laugh out loud and be outraged at the naughtiness of the baddie in equal measures.

We cannot help but memorise huge passages, as a by-product of reading and listening to this book, as they are so exquisite and enjoyable!

Every child should have access to this book... please make it available on Kindle so that we can have it with us always :-)
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A definite hit with my son (1yr), 11 Feb. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Highway Rat (Hardcover)
My 1 year old son loves this book (he enjoys all the Julia Donaldson ones but this is one of his absolute favourites). You do have to read it a few times to get the hang of it, and it works best with a galloping type rhythm, but it is worthwhile persevering with as it is good fun once you get the hang of it.

It can literally stop my son from crying (until the end of the book when he gets upset it is over and wants me to start again). The pictures are bright and colourful, I just wish they did a boardbook version so he could look through it by himself without the risk of torn pages.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3.0 out of 5 stars A Rat is a Rat, 29 Jan. 2013
By 
This review is from: The Highway Rat (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
When I read a children's picture book I like it to have a jolly and happy spirit, but this is not always the case. Kid's books can be dark - is `Billy Goat Gruff' or `Three Little Pigs' a jolly story, or quite scary? `The Highway Rat' by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler falls into this category as the Rat in question is not a pleasant chap. He is an old school highway rat who steals the food of already hungry animals - whilst he grows fatter his furry friends waste away. The Rat does get his comeuppance, but is he really punished enough for his misdeeds?

As a work of illustration `Rat' works well, the book is best viewed in large format in all its glory. There is fun to be had comparing the different food stuffs with the animals. However, I found it all a little dark in places, especially the images of the very hungry animals. It is clear that everything will turn out OK, but success is achieved through further trickery and does not really teach you that being nice is the best thing to do.

Perhaps I am delving a little too deeply into what is a simple tale, but for me `The Highway Rat' lacked the humour or the heart needed to lift the story. `The Gruffalo' was an anti-hero of sorts, but at least he had a certain mystery and charm, the Rat in question here is just a slightly nasty piece of work who never really learns his lesson. A fun book, which perhaps could have done with more balance to the story.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good bedtime book, 26 Sept. 2012
By 
Sam M (England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Highway Rat (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is a tale about a mean rat who steals the food from other animals until he meets his match in the form of a cleaver duck. It is about the perfect length to keep small children's attention at story time and has very good illustrations. As with most Julia Donaldson books (we have nearly all of them), it takes the form of a poem which flows well, but is not as easy to read as some of her other books. This is a good book and deserves it's 4 stars but does not reach the 5 star heights of The Gruffalo or Tiddler.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Early reading, 15 Nov. 2012
By 
This review is from: The Highway Rat (Paperback)
A nice hardback book from Julia Donaldson. We know to expect quality in the story when it comes from a writer like Julia. Another fairly large book with beautiful illustrations to build a good picture of the story for younger readers. My children love the flow of Julia's stories, almost like poetry. Her writing style is lovely and teaches children to put expression into their voices as they read. The characters are always likeable and imaginative. Another good one from the writer of Gruffalo.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous to read aloud, 25 Sept. 2011
This review is from: The Highway Rat (Hardcover)
This is my new favourite to read aloud to my children. The language and illustrations are of the wonderfully high standard that fans of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler have come to expect. In addition to a thought-provoking plot device, 'The Highway Rat' features a loveable villain, a clever heroine and a happy ending; everything that you'd hope for in a children's book.

But for me the particular joy here lies in the rhythm and repetition, inspired by The Highwayman poem, which make for wonderfully theatrical readings. As in other Donaldson favourites, the various animal characters are fabulous for those who like to have fun with different voices too. My two-year-old son chants 'Highway Rat' repeatedly at bedtime until we read this and I am so very happy to oblige. For me, it's perfect.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars Don't fret the small stuff!!, 13 Sept. 2012
By 
Anthony Kelly (Wicklow, Ireland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Highway Rat (Hardcover)
Nearly everything you have or want will suffer in comparison to something else and this book is no different. A lot of very good childrens books will suffer in comparison to The Gruffalo, Room on the Broom, Snail on the Whale ... Does this mean you should deprive your children of Slinky Malinky or One Ted or Little Red Tractor or ... (actually if you think about it Harry Potter doesn't compare well with Lord of the Rings but you wouldn't want someone elses literary opinion to persuade you not to get them for your children not to mention yourself?) The answer is obviously no. The Highway Rat is beautifully illustrated and to be honest my young kids like spotting similarities in the books (especially delighting in finding the Gruffalo fish in Tiddler!!) As for the writing, well it doesn't run as well as The Gruffalo but it's better than Charlie Cook or Zog and at 45 years of age I can see that but I seriously doubt that my 2 yeart old can nor my 5 year old! I read our books to my children and I do my best to make them flow (add or drop a word or two works well). We love them all! If you know and like other books by these two people well then don't fret the small stuff and go and add this to your collection. Enjoy.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Highway Rat, 31 Oct. 2011
This review is from: The Highway Rat (Hardcover)
Another great book by Julia Donaldson about a Rat who is stealing all the other animals food but gets his commupence in the end. The story rhymes which is great for your child to learn similare sounding words. The illustration is great and if you're a regular Julia Donaldson reader you and your child will be able to spot animals and the gruffalo which appear in different stories.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 324 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

The Highway Rat
The Highway Rat by Julia Donaldson (Paperback - 6 Sept. 2012)
£2.99
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews