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I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book. More

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Author: David Almond

Illustrator: Polly Dunbar

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Publisher: Candlewick Press,

Material: hard cover

Summary: The Great Human Bird Competition is coming to town and Lizzie’s Dad, Jackie, is preparing to enter the contest. Hoping to find her "old dad," Lizzie decides to help him. Family and friends think the contest is too dangerous and try to persuade them not to participate. Jackie and Lizzie are determined to win. Are the fear and anxiety of their relatives and friends justified? Will Jackie and Lizzie survive? In this illustrated chapter book come see what happens when people want to fly!

Type of Reading: bedtime story, family reading, illustrated chapter, independent reading, read aloud book, remedial reader

Recommended Age: read together: 6 to 12; read yourself: 10 and up

Interest Level: 7 to 12

Reading Level: 5.5

Age of Child: Reviewed by a student at North Junior High School, St. Cloud, MN, as part of the Use Your ABCs program.

Young Reader Reaction: This is for kids ages 7 to 10 because it is fairly appropriate and good for book reports. I picked the book becuase it looked pretty good, sounded fun and inviting, and looked fairly easy to read. I did not like the book because it was confusing, uninteresting, boring, and it wasn't that detailed. The first chapter started out pretty good.

Adult Reader Reaction: This is a quality piece of work. I would place it in top 10% of children's literature for both the author and the illustrator. It is in a class with The Bee Man Of Orn

Pros: The reader will find the story funny and enjoyable. The characters are wacky, zany, and fun to know. The illustrations are nothing short of spectacular.
Student review: If you like birds and you want to learn about them, then this books is right for you.

Cons: None!
Student reviewer: This is not entertaining. It did not have very good details or characters.

Borrow or Buy: Buy. This is an enjoyable and fun book to read. It is one of those books where the story and the illustrations will draw the reader back time and time again.
Student reviewer: Skip. It really isn't worth reading. I really didn't enjoy it, and it didn't make sense at all. It's a good book for beginners, but not middle-schoolers.


Educational Themes: This book is a humorous fantasy. It is well written and superbly illustrated. It is sure to be regarded as a fun read by its targeted age group and one to which they will frequently return. This work is an example of what quality children’s literature can be.

Notes: The Reading Tub, Inc. received an advance reader copy of this title for review. This was an unsolicited donation from the publisher.
Flesch Kincaid reading level 5.5

Literary Categories: Fiction - adventure, flying, family, humor, fantasy, picture book

Date(s) Reviewed: September 2008, November 2009

Other Reviews:


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