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Posts Tagged ‘fears’

The Day the Plants Fought Back by Belinda O’Keefe, illus. Richard Holt

June 9, 2019 Comments off

plants foughtThe Day the Plants Fought Back by Belinda O’Keefe, illus. Richard Holt. Pub. Scholastic, 2019.

Patrick and Wayne are “two boisterous boys who made lots of noise”. Unfortunately they were also destructive especially with plants. Then the plants fight back and scare the living daylights out of the boys.

As a result their behaviour changes. See what happens.

Love the rhyming text which makes this picture book a good read-a-loud for juniors and the message is perfect. Sometimes people need a good hard scare to make them see sense. Fear is a good way to curb behaviour – a male teacher once told me fear was the key to an orderly classroom. Mind you that was 20 years ago.

Richard holt’s illustrations are perfect. the excitable boys, the fearsome plants with eyes and ears and the wistful mother. A good little package this.

Things in the Sea are Touching Me! by Linda Jane Keegan, illus. Minky Stapleton

March 9, 2019 Comments off

touching meThings in the Sea are Touching Me! by Linda Jane Keegan, illus. Minky Stapleton. Pub. Scholastic, 2019.

Ever go into the sea and things touch you in both shallow water or deeper water? It could be a crab it could be seaweed or something else.

Linda Jane Keegan’s rhyming text is witty and unforced as she describes a young girls experiences in the sea. Mum is there too of course and sun safety is adhered to.

Minky Stapleton’s illustrations are colourful and enhance the drama, with the eyes of the characters particularly expressive.

A good package this to talk about fears and experiences at the beach. Good read-a-loud for juniors.

Beware the Deep Dark Forest by Sue Whiting, illus. Annie White

October 18, 2018 Comments off

beware dark forestBeware the Deep Dark Forest by Sue Whiting, illus. Annie White. Pub. Walker Books, 2018.

Rosie warns her little dog Tinky not to go into the deep dark forest because it is full of carnivorous plants and venomous snakes but Tinky goes anyway.

Rosie follows Tinky in against the advice of her grandma, ignoring the rumours of what was in the forest.  She has to sneak past a ferocious wolf and contend with a troll before effecting a rescue.

The illustrations are superb. Annie White creates a fearsome looking forest which hints at deathly acts and creates a monstrous troll who has his mind set on dinner.

Great read-a-loud story for juniors with plenty to look through slowly later.

The Visitor by Anjte Damm.

May 19, 2018 Comments off

The Visitor by Anjte Damm. Pub. Gecko Press, 2018.

visitorWhat a brilliantly conceived and perceptive picture book about fear and loneliness this is.

Illustrated using photographs with cardboard cutout figures inserted, it tells the story of a lonely old lady who never goes outside because she is scared. The photographs are gloomy and she is gloomy.

Then a paper plane comes through her window which exacerbates her fears until a small boy knocks on her door and makes himself at home. he is bright and breezy and wears his cap on backwards

She tells him her name is Elise and he is Emil. He asks her to read to him from her library from which she has read every book. He brings colour into her life. He tells her that her house is cool.

The last double paged illustration in the book is majorly different from the identical illustration at the start. Read it and see how, you will not be disappointed.

The written text is simple, well place in the illustrations and wise beyond belief.

Eric Makes a Splash by Emily MacKenzie

March 24, 2018 Comments off

eric splashEric Makes a Splash by Emily MacKenzie. Pub. Bloomsbury, 2018.

This is a picture book about fears. We all have fears and most are not warranted and can be easily overcome.

Eric is scared about lots of things- noises in the night, spiders in his welly boots and getting lost in the park among others. Fortunately he has a brave friend called Flora who is fearless. Eric thinks she is the cat’s whiskers.

She shows Eric how to overcome some of his fears but then he is invited to a swimming party at the Soggy Towel Swimming Pool. This sends Eric into a whirl but Flora kits him out in gear and persuades him to pretend to be a shark or a turtle so in he goes and loves it. But Flora looks very worried indeed..

Simply told nicely illustrated in bright water colours and with a great message for children. Be confident in what you do and overcome your fears.

The Yark by Bertrand Santini, Illus. Laurent Gapaillard

February 19, 2018 Comments off

yarkThe Yark by Bertrand Santini, Illus. Laurent Gapaillard. Pub. Gecko press, 2018.

I have always believed that a little fear in children’s lives is not a bad thing as long as it is done in areas like literature, in cinema or the Arts. This brilliant short novel fits the bill like no other.

Of all the various Monsters that teem upon the face of the earth, the Human species is the most widespread. There is another, though, more rare, less known. It is the Yark” This is the first paragraph of the novel and it whets the appetite.

We learn that the Yark loves eating children but only good children. He has a delicate stomach and cannot eat bad children who lie, bully or are spoilt. They taste foul and give him indigestion. Unfortunately the World is full of such children and it is hard to find a delicious good child.

The Yark goes hunting for one using Father Xmas’s list of good children. Through this he meets Madeleine and the meeting will change him for ever. Aww!

Easy to read and a great read-a-loud for juniors and middle school readers.

The story is brilliantly supported by Laurent Gapaillard’s pen and ink Victorian-gothic illustrations. The Yark is a superb creation.

This is a five star work, don’t miss it. Adults will smile knowingly.

I Can’t Sleep by Stephanie Blake.

July 15, 2017 Comments off

can't sleepI Can’t Sleep by Stephanie Blake. Pub Gecko Press 2017.

I admit I am addicted to these picture books about Simon, the rabbit with a great imagination. This latest book keeps my addiction going and it is available for purchase in August.

Simon and his little brother Casper decide to build a MEGA GIGA-NORMOUS hut out of Casper’s blanky. The reader will rightly pick that there is trouble ahead when it is bed time. Casper can’t sleep without his blanky and Simon has to assume his alter ego identity, Super Rabbit, to rescue the situation.

Great fun with the familiar big font text and whole page primary colour illustrations, to accentuate the drama of the story. Blues and black for the night and brighter colours for day time and the monster.

Good read-a-loud for juniors and a knowing laugh for adults.

Categories: Junior Fiction, Picture book Tags: ,