Thursday, 3 December 2009

Aladdin Jigsaw Book by Richard Johnson

November 2009, MacMillan
14 pages, Hardback (more like a board book)

Review copy


Clouds: 4
Pencils: 5
Yunaleska's recommended rating: ♥♥♥♥

Aladdin is a classic fairytale that has been retold many times. It never loses its magic, and this retelling is now exception. I loved Aladdin when the Disney version came out - I never forget the pyjamas which had parts that glowed in the dark. This book doesn't glow in the dark (sadly), but it has me eagerly turning the pages.

The story is the same: Aladdin, a boy both poor and lazyboy lives with his widow mother. He is tricked by an evil sorcerer to search for a magic lamp. He doesn't hand it over to the sorcerer, and gets shut in the cave. When he rubs it, a genie comes out and grants him a wish. Aladdin becomes rich, then when the riches run out he goes to throw the lamp away. It gets rubbed again and a second genie comes out (s o they can more wishes). Aladdin falls in love with Princess Badroulbadour, and with the genie's help woos the princess. The sorcerer comes back, and because he is evil removes the princess and the palace. Aladdin manages to recover his wife, and they live happily ever after.

The soft looking vibrant tones on the front cover are a glimpse of the pages within. Each part of the story is in a double page spread. The first page has the story, and three picture, the first of which is a smaller version of the puzzle on the other page. The puzzle has 24 pieces, is easy to put out and put back in the book. It doesn't fall out - I tried shaking it when it was upside down, and nothing happened. Looking at the puzzle picture my imagination is fired up and I can imagine the rest of the story in my mind using the colour schemes.

One good feature of the book is at the back there are several questions, some encourage the reader to look for objects within the pictures, others provide thinking points for the story as a whole. It adds to the already interactive nature of this book.
Richard Johnson's retelling of the classic style in a new format (at least to me) is worth getting on any child's bookshelf, especially for girls who love fairy tales. Strictly speaking this may not be a fairy tale, but it feels like one to me.

The style of Aladdin Jigsaw Book is carried on in the rest of Richard's work, which can be seen on his website.

Liked this? Try My Magnetic Space Station by Joy Gosney

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