Sunday, 23 February 2014

Children's Book Review: The Singing Mermaid by Julia Donaldson and Lydia Monks

The Official Book Blurb:
"The singing mermaid is tempted away from her home shores to join the circus. The audiences love her but the poor mermaid, kept in a tank by the wicked circus owner Sam Sly, soon longs to return to the freedom of the sea. Will she ever escape?"

Our Review:
The Singing Mermaid, written by the multi award winning author of The Gruffalo, Julia Donaldson, and illustrated by the talented Lydia Monks has everything one would expect from an excellent children's book. 

The story begins with a young mermaid who is living an idyllic life with her friends in the sea. But, as with many children's books, you have a villain who tries to ruin things for the main character. In this book, that job falls to the aptly named Sam Sly, who sets out to lure the innocent mermaid into joining his circus with promises of riches and fame. But once in the circus the mermaid realises that there is nowhere she would rather be than home in Silversands with her friends by the sea. 

Despite the fact that the main character is a mermaid, we believe that this book should appeal to both girls and boys. The story captured our imagination right from the start with beautiful illustration, colour and vocabularyWritten in rhyme, the text is easy to follow and features repetition in places, making it easier for new readers to grasp. Meanwhile, the illustrations really add to the story and there is plenty to see and discuss on every page. 

From toddlers to young readers, this story has a lot to offer with fun, drama and excitement all underpinned with a key message - the importance of friendship. 

For anyone looking to extend the learning possibilities of this book there is a collection of useful ideas here.  

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