Posts Tagged ‘Axel Scheffler’

Room On The Broom

Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler(illustrator)

room on the broomThe witch and her cat are happily flying through the sky on a broomstick when the wind picks up and blows away the witch’s hat, then her bow, and then her wand! Luckily, three helpful animals find the missing items, and all they want in return is a ride on the broom. But is there room on the broom for so many friends? And when disaster strikes, will they be able to save the witch from a hungry dragon?

So, today at the Supermarket it was ‘Room on the Broom – LOOK!’ followed by ‘Pleeeaaase’, which, as it was on offer, I couldn’t refuse! I’d barely got the milk in the fridge before we flopped on the sofa with great excitement to read Joshua’s newest addition to his collection!

As you might imagine, this is another truly wonderful story. ‘Room on the Broom’ is told in delightful poetry, has great humour and the witch is very friendly and likeable. This is perfect for pre-schoolers – the rhyming means they can pick up the flow very quickly and the humour makes us all chuckle out loud. This is a funny story about how the witch keeps having to stop and ‘land’ due to various items falling off of her and how they end up collecting passengers along the way. Joshua was particularly excited to find out that a dragon is involved and of course Alex Scheffler’s illustrations capture us along the way.

Verdict: If you don’t have it – put it on your list! Your pre-schooler will thank you!

Reviewed by Lesley

Publisher: Macmillan Children’s books
Publication Date: April 2010
Format: Board book
Pages: 28
Genre: Picture book
Age: Picture book
Reviewer: Lesley
Source: Own Copy
Challenge: British book
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Charlie Cook’s Favourite Book

Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler(illustrator)

Charlie Cook cover artCharlie Cook is reading a book about a pirate captain, who is reading a book about Goldilocks, who is reading about a knight, who is reading about a frog . . . From kings and queens to aliens and ghosts, there’s something for everyone in Charlie’s amazing book Entertaining and original – another winner from the best picture book team in the world.

We are big fans of Julia Donaldson and Alex Scheffler and my four year old is busy ensuring we get the whole collection as quickly as possible!

While this story doesn’t capture the interest of Samuel, who is almost three, like a lot of Donaldson/Scheffler books do, Joshua who is four and a half really enjoys it. Told, as usual, in rhyme and with fabulous illustrations this story goes round in a full circle, starting with Charlie Cook who is curled up in a cosy chair reading his favourite book, in which the main character finds a book… As it goes on, each character in each book goes on to find a book in which is the next main character.

Maybe that sounds confusing, but you quickly get into it and on first reading it’s a surprise to find out what’s on the next page.

Verdict:You can’t fail to be drawn in by Julia Donaldson’s wonderful poetry and Alex Scheffler’s fabulous illustrations and while this may not be quite suitable for very young readers, I think older pre-schoolers will really enjoy it.

Reviewed by Lesley

Publisher: Macmillian Children’s Books
Publication Date: September 2006
Format: Paperback
Pages: 32
Genre: Picture book
Age: Picture book
Reviewer: Lesley
Source: Own Copy
Challenge: British book
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Superworm

Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler

superworm 2Children’s Laureate Julia Donaldson and illustrator Axel Scheffler, the brilliant team behind The Gruffalo, have created a new exuberant character who is sure to delight young readers – and their parents – in this eagerly anticipated hardback, Superworm. The funny and fantastically-illustrated story is full of bouncy rhyming verses and has a fun chorus that is sure to have preschoolers joining in as they follow Superworm’s adventures as he faces up to the wicked Wizard Lizard and his sinister servant Crow. When Superworm is kidnapped by them, it is up to his animal friends to save him. The quirky illustrations are full of charming details and the unlikely hero of the tale has immense appeal for children aged 3 and over.

I must confess that I only bought ‘Superworm’ as it was on offer and because one of children’s literature’s most famous duos, Julia Donaldson and Axel Schleffer were behind the helm. It couldn’t be that much of a dud surely?!

To my relief, this book has proved to be an absolute hit with my 5yr old daughter and 2yr old son. Whilst thinking about doing this review, I was trying to work out what makes this book so loved. Asking the children gets the usual, not very descriptive, ‘It’s good’ so no real hope there.

I can only assume that it’s the combination of having a ‘superhero’ and that the characters are bugs and other small common creatures that the children can easily identify with. Each page is filled with action, the pace is fast, Superworm is afterall busy being a superhero and all that.

Also, Superworm is a hero that’s cool to younger children. Who cares about x ray vision, seeing the future, super strength etc when Superworm can make himself into a slide, skipping rope, train, lasso and so on? Throw in a dastardly lizard and his crow servant who want to use Superworm for their own nefarious purposes and you have the formula for a fantastic book in your hands.

The usual Donaldson and Schleffer footprints are here with the witty, easy to read poem that the kids quickly start to memorise and chant aloud with you in glee. Coupled with Schaeffler’s trademark quirky, detailed illustrations that adds life and character to the ‘creepy crawlies’ and the world which they inhabit, this is an enjoyable book to listen to and look at.

Verdict: This book may appear to have a limited target audience but would actually be appreciated by most children. It’s fast paced, full of action and yet easily relatable, catching most children’s interest. I’m sure that when the weather gets warmer we’ll be outside looking for our own ‘Superworm’ and friends!

Reviewed by Karen

Publisher: Alison Green Books
Publication Date: September 2012
Format: Hardback
Pages: 32
Genre: Picture book
Age: Picture book
Reviewer: Karen
Source: Own Copy
Challenge: British book
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Zog

Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler (illustrator)

Zog is the keenest dragon in school. He is also the most accident-prone.
luckily, a mysterious little girl always comes by and patches up his bumps and bruises. But will she be able to help him in his toughest test, capturing a princess? A wonderfully
Funny new story from the creators of Gruffalo and Stick Man.

This is another great read from the Donaldson/Scheffler team. The illustrations are in the same vein as those you would expect from Gruffalo and the like; clever, funny, brightly coloured and plenty to accompany the story for a little reader.

The story of the dragons made me smile alot. It’s great to see them learn how to be dragons and make plenty of mistakes along the way. Dragon school looks cool and is a great idea for children to relate to.

I also enjoyed the character of the leading lady, I can’t tell you her name without spoiling a plot twist! It was brilliant to have a strong minded girl at the centre of everything. She makes her own decisions, is very brave and gets her man. What more could you want? It is funny to see her sorting out the dragons and her knight. She makes very good life choices too, helping others and helping herself.

Verdict: if you’re a fan of this team then you should add this book to your collection

Reviewed by Helen

Publisher: Alison Green Books
Publication Date: September 2011
Format: Paperback
Pages: 32
Genre: Picture book, Rhyming
Age: Picture book
Reviewer: Helen
Source: Own Copy
Challenge: British Author
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The Gruffalo’s Child

Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler (illustrator)
The Gruffalo said that no gruffalo should Ever set foot in the deep dark wood. But one wild and windy night the Gruffalo’s child ignores her father’s warning and tiptoes out into the snow. After all, the Big Bad Mouse doesn’t really exist… does he?

Although I realise these books have been around for a good few years, I didn’t have kids of ‘that age’ at the time and so they kind of passed me by. We were first introduced to the Gruffalo a few months ago when at a friend’s house for Sunday lunch. At one of those ‘let’s calm the kids down’ moments our hosts put the mini film of the Gruffalo on the tv. Well, we were hooked. This led to us buying the book and reading it every night for a looong time. Then, more recently, we stumbled upon The Gruffalo’s child whilst rootling through the preschool library box. Another trip to the local book shop ensued and now this is our current bedtime, and anytime really, favourite.

This story starts with the Gruffalo’s child questioning her father about The Big Bad Mouse that lives in the deep dark wood and once her father goes to sleep the Gruffalo’s child sneaks out in to the woods to discover him for herself. Along the way she meets the snake, the owl and the fox and initially wonders if they might not be the Big Bad Mouse she’s heard all about.

The tale is told in the same kind of rhyme as ‘The Gruffalo’ with the same wonderful illustrations by Axel Scheffler. My son loves joining in with the rhyming and because he’s now learnt the bits that repeat he can sit and ‘read’ it to himself with a degree of accuracy which makes him feel very grown up.

Eventually the Gruffalo’s child does meet a little mouse – but this couldn’t be the Big Bad Mouse she’d heard all about, could it? I won’t tell you how it ends but the little mouse gets to show us how brave and clever he is again.

Verdict: A fab read

Review by Lesley

Publisher: MacMillan Children’s Books
Publication Date: September 2005
Format: Paperback
Pages: 32
Genre: Children’s
Age: Picture Book
Reviewer: Lesley
Source: Own Copy
Challenge: British Book
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The Tickle Book: With pop-up surprises

Tickle Book

Ian Whybrow and Axel Scheffler (illustrator)

Pull the tabs and lift the flaps and discover how very tickly a book can be. Watch the Ticklemonster in action, tickling his animal friends at every opportunity: monkeys in the train, pigs on the farm, penguins playing and bears in bed.
Look out! There’s a Ticklemonster about!

The Tickle Book is a delightful tale which is sure to capture the attention of even the wriggliest toddler! Each page has a different setting; a house, a station and a farm among others in which you can lift the flaps and pull the tags and look for the Ticklemonster who will be sure to appear somewhere.

With a rhyme on each page and wonderful illustrations my two little ones were torn between wanting to point and talk about everything on the page or discovering where the Ticklemonster was hiding so they could get a tickle from mummy too!

Verdict: A really fun book which easily engages, it’s a favourite in this house!

Reviewed by Lesley

Publisher: Macmillian Children’s Books
Publication Date: May 2006
Format: Paperback
Pages: 12
Genre: Picture Book
Age: Picture Books
Reviewer: Lesley
Source: Own Copy
Challenge: N/A
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