Awesome animal stories for kids by Aleesha Darlison

cover image

Ill. by James Hart. Random House, 2015. ISBN 9780857989680
(Age:6-8) Recommended. Aleesah Darlinson's collection of animal stories is just right for the newly independent reader. Each short tale is engaging and easy to read; there is a touch of magic, a dash of fantasy, humour and wise advice from the animal and human characters.
The author's country childhood experiences surrounded by native wildlife, farm animals and a range of pets are reflected by two stories. In Orphan Foal, the young owner learns the great responsibility, the rewards and the difficulties involved in hand rearing a horse. Swoop explores the raising of a baby magpie and the struggle of knowing when to release it back to the wild.
Two tales with a seaside setting are fun to read. A crazy, creative Labrador comes to Digby's aid when he enters his first Sand Sculpture Competition. Holly's boring day at the beach turns into a magical underwater adventure with Serena the mermaid.
Jack returns to cheer up Puff the Magic Dragon, a grandfather cat spins a tale about brave King of the Felines - Alvarado and a dinosaur fan turns into Dino-girl!
Illustrator James Hart's brings the stories to life with dancing starfish, alien pets, winged ivory ponies and castles filled with royal pig and a jealous pug dog.
An enjoyable junior novel just right for a class read aloud, to introduce different genres and literary writing styles.
Rhyllis Bignell