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Reviews Written by
Jane Lebow "jennywren" (New York, NY)
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The Magic School Bus Inside a Hurricane (Magic School Bus (Paperback))
The Magic School Bus Inside a Hurricane (Magic School Bus (Paperback))
by Joanna Cole
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Another great book in the series, 10 Mar. 2012
My whole family enjoys and is informed by the Magic School Bus series, and "Inside a Hurricane" is just as fine as the others that we own. The story is entertaining and highly informative in the liveliest possible way. The "essays" by Ms. Frizzle's class members add additional facts and substance to what is in the story. These books are no at all easy to find, so I am grateful that I was able to obtain a copy for my grandchildren, their parents and me.


At the Waterworks (Magic School Bus)
At the Waterworks (Magic School Bus)
by Joanna Cole
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific series!, 10 Mar. 2012
Like others in the series, At the Waterworks (Magic School Bus) is not only entertaining for all the members of my family, but educational in the most appealing way. The story is humorous and informative; the "essays" of members of Ms. Frizzle's class provide additional facts that expand on the story. I highly recommend this book and others in the series.


The Magic School Bus in the Time of the Dinosaurs (Magic School Bus (Paperback))
The Magic School Bus in the Time of the Dinosaurs (Magic School Bus (Paperback))
by Joanna Cole
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Hobnobbing with the dinosaurs, 1 April 2011
Like so many others of the Magic School Bus books, this one is a charmer, informative and funny. Ms. Frizzle and her students take a trip into prehistory and meet the dinosaurs with a variety of comments and levels of enthusiasm. The story is itself a lot of fun; the students' "reports," shown in the margins add engrossing facts.

These stories can be enjoyed by the whole family and read over and over. In our case the readers (or read-to) in the family ranged from five years old to sixty-eight, and the story inspired lively conversations among us. The wonderfully quirky story and the comments of Ms. Frizzle and her students make Magic School Bus stories unique. Enjoyment and learning are combined effortlessly, and one need not be an avid student of science to go along happily for the ride.

We already have several others in the series (we especially like the ones written by the original authors), and I'm sure we'll buy others. We've explored the ocean floor, the human body, space and other places. What's next, Ms. Frizzle? Who knows, but I hope to find out soon!


The Magic School Bus on the Ocean Floor (Magic School Bus (Paperback))
The Magic School Bus on the Ocean Floor (Magic School Bus (Paperback))
by Joanna Cole
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A hit for the whole family, 1 April 2011
Like so many of the other Magic School Bus books, this one works on many levels and is informative and pleasing for people of all ages and can be read, over and over. In our case those who enjoyed the book ranged from five years old to sixty-eight. The delightful, imaginative text tells a good story, mixing humor with scientific fact with such skill that learning is effortless, and there have been many chuckles while reading about the incomparable Ms. Frizzle, her students and the magic school bus, which turns into a submarine for this book.

Well done! I recommend this book (and others in the series - especially, those by the original authors). You don't have to be well informed about science, nor especially interested in science to get a lot out of the book.


LEGO Star Wars 8084 Snowtrooper Battle Pack
LEGO Star Wars 8084 Snowtrooper Battle Pack

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Grandson loves this!, 16 Jan. 2011
This set was the fulfillment of my five-year-old grandson's holiday wishes. A friend of his had gotten it for his birthday, and my grandson really wanted one. Now, he not only has built the set, but carries around one of the troopers, explaining the figure's function on the ship, whether he is a "baddie" or a "goodie" and more. For a young Star Wars fan, it was a big hit (even though his knowledge of the movies is practically nil). Apparently, the ship was not difficult to build, but I think that the figures added a great deal to the appeal.

Unlike some other Lego sets, this one may have its day. Passions are changeable, and at five it may be pirates one year and Star Wars the next. Still, one never knows, and like bricks in other Lego sets, these can be used for other purposes. The bricks are small, so the permutations are many.

I was a little leery of giving my grandson a toy that seems to be part of promoting weapons and wars, if only in fantasy, but I've changed my mind. My boy so enjoys playing with this set, and he is so proud to have it (owning it does seem to confer some special prestige among his friends, and they, too, love to play with it) that I have parked my reservations at the door. Nothing is going to make this child anything but peace-loving - except in his vivid imagination. That's OK with me.


LEGO Creator 6745: Propeller Power
LEGO Creator 6745: Propeller Power
Offered by RACHAEL'S
Price: £34.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Engrossing, versatile construction toy, 16 Jan. 2011
Even with a lot of pieces involved, with some help, my dextrous five-year-old grandson constructed the propeller plane (one of three in this set). I like that the set encourages interest in both the building and "flying" of the planes. It also has the capacity to inspire talk about how planes fly, what kinds of planes there are (including one from long ago, the propeller plane) and other matters that can interest a young child and be a continuing source of discussion. Being Lego, the planes can't take a lot of playing, but with care the set holds together nicely. My grandson loves it, and it's a contrast to some of the other sets he loves, including Star Wars.

And of course, the young builder is not constrained from using the bricks for other, unrelated projects of his own!


Lentil (Picture Puffin)
Lentil (Picture Puffin)
by Robert McCloskey
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.32

5.0 out of 5 stars Still a winner!, 9 Jan. 2010
Lentil, a charming old book by Robert McCloskey (Make Way for Ducklings, Homer Price, One Morning in Maine and many others), still enchants the reader. My four-almost-five-year-old grandson, a budding musician, can't read the book himself, but he enjoys hearing how Lentil surmounted his difficulties and succeeded in making a good name for himself with his harmonica. Typical of McCloskey, the illustrations are just as inviting as the text.

I was not there when the book arrived, but it was sent promptly, and apparently was in fine shape when it got there. What a pleasure also to be able to send something from the States to the UK and not have to fret about dollars and pounds. A great convenience.


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