We don't do stars...
We don't do thumbs...
We read children's books and grade them in 10 categories:
literary quality
plot
voice
originality
descriptive ability
humor (if attempted)
illustrations (if present)
believability of characters
believability of situations
overall reading enjoyment

There is no grading curve. There are no points for classroom participation. There is no extra credit.
If you disagree, come speak to us after class.

The Grading System

A+.....this means (guess what) we think it's great. So great it surprised even us.
A.....this means it's pretty darn good. A book we'd recommend to just about everyone we know.
B.....better than most. Not exactly Shakespeare for kids, though, if you get our drift.
C.....mediocre. Like the color beige, it didn't stand out.
D.....we didn't like it. There were more bad aspects than good ones.
F.....it reeked of badness. We read it over and over when we are in dire need of hysterical laughter.
F-.....We're pretty sure Dante had a circle of hell for the people who wrote these...and a lower circle for those who published them.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Reporter's Review: The Night Fairy, by Laura Amy Schlitz, illustrated by Angela Barrett


Candlewick, March 2010
Overall Grade: A+

When a sleepy bat mistakes her for a moth and takes a bite, Flory the night fairy is left wingless--and with one fear: bats. She decides to become a day fairy to avoid the creatures, but the day is not without its own dangers: squirrels, spiders, praying mantises...but Flory, always stubborn and resourceful, learns to survive and makes a home.
The Night Fairy is an ideal read-aloud for any children old enough to handle a few scary moments--the language is lyrical and descriptive, making it a pleasure for the adult reading as well as the child being read to. From the first lovely description on page one, "eyes that sparkled like blackberries under dew," to its humorous and endearing ending, this book is definitely one that fits into that "small gem" category along with its main character. I loved the wonderful world-building of fairy life--the petal dresses, the thorn dagger--I loved the humor and the cast of supporting characters, especially Skuggle, the most squirrel-like squirrel you will ever come across, I loved the adventure, I loved Angela Barrett's beautiful illustrations. The omniscient narrative voice was slightly off-putting; it came across as very obviously human and adult. I would prefer a firmer handle on the fairy perspective, but I will allow that this familiar narrator may make the story readily accessible and familiar to young readers.

Literary Quality: A+
Plot: A-
Voice: A-
Originality: A-
Descriptive Ability: A+
Humor: A
Illustrations: A+
Believability of Characters: A+
Believability of Situations: A+
Overall Reading Enjoyment: A

Possibly objectionable topics*: some moments may be scary for very young, sensitive readers

1 comment:

Terresa said...

Love this blog! As a Children's librarian & writer, you know I'll be back!!