Friday, August 16, 2013

Jack's Amazing Shadow - a book review

"Books can be dangerous.  The best ones should be labeled, "This could change your life."
                                       ~Helen Exley

Ever played Shadow Tag when you were a kid?  Ever lay in bed at night and cast shadows on the wall trying to make a bird, a rabbit, an angel appear?  Shadows are part of who we are (literally) and so much fun to play around with.  Today's book takes shadow play to a whole new level.  I know you will like this book and it will encourage you to go outside in the warm sunshine with your child and resurrect those warm fuzzy feelings as you both engage in silly, shadow play.  Enjoy!

Title:  Jack's Amazing Shadow
Author:  Tom Percival

Jack is penned as an ordinary boy.  One teeny tiny thing about Jack is far from ordinary, and that his amazing, magical shadow.  You see Jack and his shadow are very best friends, you could say they are inseparable.  They romp and play and have great fun together.  One day Jack's shadow got carried away and started to be naughty.   He turned on the taps in the sink and let the water overflow.  Bad Shadow. He pulled the nails from a picture in the living room and detached it from the wall.  Bad Shadow.  He put on a very scary face and frightened the cat and he piled up a stack of dishes so high....well you can guess what the outcome of that prank was!   Very, bad shadow! The sad part was that Jack got all the blame for the mischief.  His parents did not believe Jack when he told them what was going on and Jack did not like that one little bit.  He decided to estrange himself from his friend because he had had enough.  After multiple attempts to disengage himself that didn't work, he finally resorted to shouting, "Go away Shadow."  "You are not my friend anymore."  His shadow slunk away and faded into oblivion .  Did that make Jack feel better now that his shadow was gone?  The illustrations take the mood of the story from there.  The range of expressions and emotions are so well Jack was miserable.  He missed his friend very much.  He realized he had been mean and he started an all out search to locate and bring his shadow back to him.  Did he finally succeed at locating and reconciling with his best friend?  Did he again become attached to Shadow and they played happily ever after?  You will have to check out the book and see for yourself.

The illustrations are playful, fun, quirky and off-beat. I liked that a lot.  The antics and expressions that are portrayed are amazing.  This would be a wonderful read aloud in a classroom situation followed by a good old fashioned game of Shadow Tag at recess time. (or any time)  (of course teacher included)

About the author:

Tom Percival writes and illustrates picture books (you know, for kids) as well as illustrating books written by other people. The most well known of these is probably the excellent Skulduggery Pleasant series by Derek Landy.
He grew up in a remote and beautiful part of South Shropshire. On reflection this seemed rather more remote than beautiful, owing to the fact that he lived in a small caravan without electricity, mains water or any sensible form of heating. He thinks that he’s probably one of the few people in his peer group to have learnt to read by gas lamp.
Surprisingly enough he has never been called ‘hippy’ (to the best of his knowledge)
Tom now lives in an actual house with his girlfriend and their two young sons.
His favourite colour is turquoise and his favourite number is probably seven.
Tobias and the Super Spooky Ghost Book is Tom’s debut picture book and is published by Harper Collins.

A man in a check shirt, sort of smiling.

Book Review Rating:       8     (Fantastic!)  

Read on and read always!  

You can purchase this book  for a minimal cost rather than going to a bigger outlet..... " Me Books"....great books, great prices....there's an app for that too.....

The good is free!


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