Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Iris and Walter by Elissa Haden Guest illustrated by Christine Davenier

I am always looking for simple beginner level books with the magic ingredient of a satisfying story.  Tonight I read Iris and Walter and I am happy to say I have found another perfect book for someone who is just beginning to gain confidence with reading.

Iris has spent her whole life living in the city.  From the illustrations it looks like it might even be New York City.  Iris loves so many things about city life - the noise, the front step of her building, playing baseball on the street, the rumble rumble of the subway under the ground and listening to tango music coming from the upstairs apartment.

Her family have moved to the country.  Mum and Dad try to show Iris all the fun she could be having. They demonstrate cartwheeling in the grass and playing monkeys in the trees but it is Grandpa who comes to the rescue.  He introduces Iris to Walter.  Country life changes completely for Iris.

"In the country there were red-tailed hawks and starry skies.  There were pale roses. And there was cool grass beneath her feet.  There was a wild horse names Rain and a sweet pony named Sal. And across the meadow, over the stream, high in a tree, was a little house.  And inside there was a new friend ... Walter."

This book has 42 pages of large print and bright water colour illustrations but more importantly this simple little book made me smile.  Looking at the web site from the author I can see there are eight more books in this series and I am keen to collect them all.  Here is a terrific review which includes some other series you might enjoy such as Mr Putter, Henry and Mudge and  Pinky and Rex all of which you will find in our school library.

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