Title: The Feathered Ogre
Author: Retold by Fran Parnell
Publisher: Barefoot Books
Published: December 2011
ISBN: 978 1846865626
The front cover is full of colour, although I personally think the Ogre on the front cover comes across as a bit scary and looks more like an angry owl with sharp teeth than an ogre….not that my 6 year old noticed though!
This is a 48 page book, the first from the Monster Stories series from Barefoot Books. It is classed as an early reader book – however comparing this to other early reader books we use, this is far more in depth with quite long words which our early reader found too hard to try. We use a lot of Oxford Learning Tree books with DS being on the top end of Level 4, so around 4 lines of writing per page. (Not a Chapter Book; which The Feathered Ogre is - so he isn't quite ready for these yet). The Feathered Ogre has between 6-10 lines on most pages, so as an early reader it didn’t work for us, and meant I was reading it to him as he got too frustrated with the length and some of the words. Maybe that’s just because of the level he is at though.
The illustrations and elements of fun in the book kept DS amused throughout. He got the moral of the story; The Princess was trapped by the Ogre who lives the on he over side of the sea, so when the King’s Gardener goes to find her, he rescues her. The Ogre has put a curse on the ferryman, who cannot get out of the boat or stop rowing unless someone else takes the oars. The Ogre runs after the Princess & gardener and ends up replacing the Ferryman.
This is a retelling of an Italian story. Both DS and I enjoyed the story overall as well as the illustrations which are good - but personally I wouldn’t have put this down as an early reader…at least not to the level which we’re at currently, which was what I was anticipating. Having looked on a review on Amazon for this someone has suggested that the Early Readers are for 6-11 year olds. I would put this in between based on our children – our 10 year old loves reading adventure books such as Percy Jackson, so this would not be something for him as an individual.
Source – Many thanks to Barefoot Books, a copy was received in return for an honest review.