The Incredible Adventures of Professor Branestawm Paperback – 4 Sep 2008
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"A triumph of child-friendly chaos" (Irish Examiner)
A wonderful children's classic, complete with original W. Heath Robinson illustrations throughout and now brought to the sceen in a feature length BBC film starring Harry Hill.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
The best thing about the book are the "seventy-six" illustrations by W Heath Robinson - he of rickety machine fame which make the book and perfectly complement the wildly imaginative stories. Wonderful for reading to the children (as an excuse to re-read them yourself).
There are 14 Incredible Adventures, and I laughed at the Pancake one (partly because I love pancakes and would have loved a machine making them for me – so would my mum, I reckon) and the Too-many Professors, which was a wonderful confection of chaos I could really imagine. I also delighted in no.3 The Professor Borrows a Book. I suspect the intricacies of the library system described would be lost on today’s youngster, since libraries are under threat, and the thought of each village having its own library with scores of rarely-requested books is just a pipe-dream. But the Professor’s principle of getting a copy of the same book out of one library in order to check it back into a different one is not unlike the way some people use credit cards, so I expect people will relate to it.
I kept wondering whether the book is too dated for the modern young reader. I was surprised that it is given a 9+ reader designation, since I felt the stories were ideal for six and upwards. Some of the words are quite long, and there is a lot of reflective narrative that is eminently suitable for a bedtime story, but I’m not sure how well it would be tackled by a young reader.
The quote from Charlie Higson on the front cover “Can still make a modern kid laugh like a drain” is something I bear in mind.Read more ›
There is an active table of contents here which you may find quite useful because although some incidents are mentioned in later stories here this is really a book of short stories. If your child has never read any Branestawm stories before then this is an ideal introduction, especially if they enjoyed the Christmas special which was on the BBC late last year. Branestawm makes Wallace (of Wallace and Gromit) look quite normal by comparison as he comes up with inventions that although created with good intentions always seem to cause chaos and damage.
As we follow Branestawm here we see the kind of troubles he gets into, and those that he causes other people. Whether he is creating a device to capture burglars, a pancake making machine or something to help with spring cleaning, things always seem to go awry, indeed whatever Branestawm touches has unforeseen consequences, including just going on holiday and attending a party.
As Branestawm manages to go from one comic mishap to another he pulls others in as well, and not just his housekeeper and the colonel, giving children a lot of comic misadventures to enjoy. This book is also brought alive by Heath Robinson’s great illustrations, especially those of the inventions of the madcap professor. This is great for children to read or even have read to them, as well as still entertaining and diverting enough for us adults, whether you have read any of the stories before or not.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
great product, though sometimes the story can be a bit confusing!Published 4 months ago by Emma Jackson
I first read this at the age of seven, and forty years later I downloaded it on a nostalgic whim. It's just as amusing... Read morePublished 10 months ago by Pandafantasia
This is a lovely book with great ideas on a 'human' scale!
I loved it as a child & got it for my grandson who is also really enjoying it!
So funny, took us ages to read this (me and my son) at bedtime, 14 stories so one story a night and two weeks of hilarity before bedtime. Great value and really enjoyable.Published 15 months ago by flossie
My brother had this as a kid and I never really got into it - but investigating for my 'bookworm' daughter I saw this and she loves it so now I have to find more! Read morePublished 17 months ago by Kloofstar
Loved this as a child. Can't get my grandchildren quite as enthusedPublished 17 months ago by Hilary Roberts