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A PHOENIX BOOK REVIEW

OF

43 Old Cemetery Road: Dying to Meet You

Recently, my husband began frequenting a local library, which, to be honest, we knew existed, but a) never got round to going, or b) never really thought about visiting for some reason. But, just a few weeks ago, the treasure was uncovered.

Although it’s a local library in a suburb of Seoul, I was absolutely amazed that they has such an extensive collection of children’s books IN ENGLISH! I have seriously underestimated this country for the past (almost) 9 years, I can tell you.

Until now, I can’t even calculate how much I’ve spent on books – which have been finished within 30 minutes of purchase on many occasions – such a waste….

But now, Phoenix has the whole of the children’s section to keep him occupied – and, of course, all FOR FREE!

The first book he borrowed today was this one by Kate Klise and illustrated by M. Sarah Klise:

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MAIN CHARACTERS:      Olive the Ghost, E. Gadds the Lawyer, Ignatius B. Grumply the author, Seymour Hope the 11 year-old boy who lives in this house.

PLOT:                               Ignatius B. Grumply moves into the house at 43, Old Cemetery Road to find some peace and     quiet, but he soon finds out that it is already occupied by Seymour, his cat, Shadow and an irritable ghost called Olive. Since Ignatius is a writer, he is distracted by Olive who keeps disturbing him. Ignatius was about to move out of the house because he didn’t pay the bills but Seymour saves the day and buys the house so that they get to stay there as a family.

The book is presented as a series of letters and extracts from the newspaper, the Ghastly Times, which kind of confused Phoenix at the beginning, because he was looking for Chapter One for a while.

But even though it was difficult to get started, Phoenix gave it a 3 out of 5 stars.

He says it was a new experience for him, since he was used to reading chapter books, but once he got started he thought it was quite interesting to read something new like this.

He recommends it for 7 to 11 year olds. But, perhaps I would narrow the gap a little to 8 – 11yrs, since perhaps some of the vocabulary might be slightly complicated for some of our younger friends.

Certainly worth a read though – especially to give our kiddies a new experience with reading a book that’s not in the traditional chapter book format.

Thank you, Phoenix for choosing this one, and sharing your views!

This book is currently retailing for £3.80 on Amazon UK

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FREE OXFORD READING TREE EBOOK LINK

Sometimes, you would just like to supplement your child’s reading with a little more than what the teacher gives at school.

Oxford Reading Tree is, of course, very well known amongst us parents, but not many of us know that there are a few of them online, too (about 250 to be precise – of all levels).

Here’s the link for those who are interested:

http://www.oxfordowl.co.uk/reading-owl/find-a-book/library-page

So, off you go and have some reading fun!


RECOMMENDED NON-FICTION BOOKS

Recently, Phoenix has become interested in a series of non-fiction books from the ‘Who Was….?’ series.

As you can see from the picture (right) we have started off with a selection of artists, inventors, leaders and, above all, great thinkers in history.

Although not shown, Phoenix is reading the ‘Who Was…?’ book on Galileo right now.

He told me that he was interested to learn that Galileo was considered a trouble-maker and got in trouble a great deal due to his forward way of thinking.

Galileo was placed under house arrest, because his views challenged well-established opinions of the time. He argued against Aristotle who held the belief that a ten-pound cannonball would fall to the ground ten times faster than a one-pound lead ball. Galileo refuted this claim, and stated that they would indeed fall at a similar speed. The balls were dropped from the Tower of Pisa and indeed both fell and hit the ground at almost exactly the same moment. (It is said that a slight wind hit the lighter ball and slowed it down a little.)

Galileo was indeed a forward thinker. Phoenix commented that he must have seemed very strange to many people back then.

We wonder what the people of Galileo’s time would have thought about Steve Jobs and Bill Gates?