Saturday, 15 September 2012
Sometimes kids books surprise you with little gems of wisdom. See above.
Just reading Book of Three at the moment.
It is excellent.
Fast moving, clearly defined and lovable characters.
It is about a quest for a lost pig that can read the future. The chapters are short and although it is quite comparable to Tolkien it is less verbose and is packed with incident.
Fun for the listener: 9/10
Fun for the reader: 10/10
Fear factor: 5/10 (some quite scary bits, not too graphic but the baddies are silent reanimated corpses and on one occasion they burn humans in baskets)
Voices: Taran - Light tone
Dallben - Old man
Gwydion - Heroic strong voice
Eilonwy - Light and spiky
Gurgi - Gollum and Dobby's lovechild
Flewddur Fflam - Very posh, thin voice occasional lapses into Leslie Phillips
Sunday, 18 December 2011
Had to get this off my chest.
Deeply, deeply disappointed by this book.
Disney did a great job of making this story exciting.
I read this aloud through to the end and my son said he enjoyed it (he was 8 at the time of reading) but is still happy for it to go to the charity shop.
But here are the problems.
Firstly who is this for? Children - the dialogue is often light and silly. Then the story is often very juvenile one moment and then deeply horrific the next. Then there are detailed descriptive passages (that I did start to skip through towards the end....)
The book constantly trips up anyone reading aloud due to the fact that:
1. It veers between witty dialogue (which is fun) between characters WHO ALL SPEAK IN EXACTLY THE SAME WAY.
2. This is broken up by detailed and dragging descriptions of places/events that do not move the story on. (If you compare White to Tolkien who also loves to describe, he describes WHILST the hobbits are travelling. He doesn't describe a place for 6 pages and then move the story on.) I'll come to Tolkien later.
3. It is very repeptitive. Wart gets changed into many different animals to teach him about beings a king. But this started to become a dull motif. The fish was fine, but the badger and the kestrel were dull. White uses the animals to draw some weak comaparisons with Human society, to be honest Wart being chased by an amourous squirrel in the cartoon was much more revealing.