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Meg and Mog - Helen Nicoll

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Authors: Helen Nicoll,Jan Pienkowski / Format: Paperback / Date of publication: 05 July 2012 / Genre: Picture Storybooks / Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd / Title: Meg and Mog / ISBN 13: 9780718194420 / ISBN 10: 0718194420 / Alternative EAN: 9780141380599

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      03.06.2010 13:15
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      Great childrens book

      -Introduction-

      I love Meg and Mog, many children's books I find a little dull when the child loves it. However Meg and Mog is interesting for child and adult I find.

      Written by Helen Nicoll and Jan Pienkowski, the story follows a Witch Meg and her stripey black and white cat Mog.

      Retails around £4.99
      ISBN 0-434-96054-3

      -Story-

      The story follows the midnight antics of Meg. She is getting ready for a spell party. You see her go through the routing of getting up, putting on her clothes, making breakfast and then flying off on her broomstick.

      Meg meets her 4 friends on the way. Once on the hill they cast a spell and each witch puts something into the cauldron (a frog, bettle, worm, bat and spider). The chant the spell but something goes wrong! There is a big boom and Meg's friends are turned into mice and Mog chases them.

      Meg says she will turn them back next year!

      -Positives-

      I think its a really clever story. As the story follows a witch getting ready to go out, comparisons can be made with a child getting ready to go out. I think the differences add interest and colour to the story, however the theme is suitably similar to a childs own experiences (i.e. getting dressed, having breakfast) that they can interact with it.

      I think the way the story is written and displayed is really child friendly and provided lots of interest and interactiveness.
      When Meg is getting dressed you see each stage and the words say what she has put on e.g. 'her big black shoes'.
      My little boy loves to do a 'spot the difference' and see what has changed for each picture.

      The story has lots of big pictures and speak bubbles. My favourite is the picture of Mog when Meg steps on his tail. There is a big 2 page picture of mog and a zigzag speak bubble with 'MEEEEOW' in it. We love to shout this bit!

      The breakfast part is great as well, the page shows all the things she is putting in the cauldron- eggs, bread, milk, fish etc. We love to point to each one and say what it is.

      The cauldron spell is lovely as you see all the ingredients going in the pot. There are pictures of the bat, frog etc. We love making the animal noises/actions to go with this bit.

      I think the illustrations are simple and primary colours and blocks of bright colour are used. It makes it great for small children.

      I have the book in hardback which has really stood the test of time.

      I also love this book as it is quite small and great for in the car/travelling.

      -Negatives-


      -Conclusion-

      This is a great interactive story, but I would say it is definitely worth getting the tape/CD to go with the story as it adds lots to the experience!

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      19.01.2010 20:58
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      definitely a must have!

      Before christmas the book people were selling a gift set of all the meg and mog books and I couldn't resist buying them. Admittedly more for myself than my son! They were one of my favourite books when I was growing up.

      Reading them again with my little boy has reminded me why I loved them so much. The illustrations are really bright and eye catching. He doesn't 'read' books he just keeps turning the pages but these have kept him staring at the pages. The colours are really striking. The font looks like handwriting and is really clear - perfect for when he's starting to read.

      I love the subjects - going to the moon, veg, castles (although that castle one is a bit weird in my opinion having them pour boiling oil on people), all served with a bit of humour, and more importantly lots of spells.

      There isn't much writing so there's lots of scope for talking about what you see on the page.

      I think these books should be part of every childs library. Lets get them still reading them in 2110!!

      Updated: my little boy is now learning to read and the clear writing is brilliant for sounding out the letters. The illustrations also inspire him to ad lib the story himself, although that might be an attempt to stay up a bit longer :-)

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        05.09.2009 21:35
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        I enjoyed these books when I was a child and my son enjoys them now.

        The Meg and Mog books were written and illustrated by Helen Nicoll and Jan Pienkowski and printed by Puffin books back in the early 1970s and I remember them from when I was young and how I really enjoyed the simple but entertaining stories and illustrations. These books seem to have a timeless appeal; they have been in print and popular with generations of kids since. My son has had several of these books since a toddler and still likes them now.

        The stories are based around 3 characters who live together Meg the witch, Mog her cat and Owl who is unsurprisingly an owl. Each book is a small paperback and based around a different scenario the characters find themselves in: Meg's eggs where they find dinosaur eggs that hatch. Meg at sea where they find themselves stranded on a desert island. Meg Mog and Ogg where they find a prehistoric man and a mammoth and Meg's car where they cast a spell to make a car. These are the books we have but there are lots more in the series.
        I think the subjects (at least in the books we have) are ones that young kids find engaging no matter what decade they have been brought up in, there is nothing in the story to really date them and I think this is part of there charm. The stories have a lot of slapstick humour to them which is again timeless, and they all have a happy ending which usually involves the characters going back home for tea.
        The illustrations are simple, line drawings in bright primary colours but they are distinctive and have an appeal to them. I like the way the story is brought to life through the use of speech bubbles from the characters and sounds illustrated in big letters incorporated in the drawings rather like a comic would. This can catch you out when reading a story for the first time as sometimes it's quite difficult to know which bit should be read next with text going this way and that.

        I find them very useful as a quick bedtime story when we are running late because they are so quick to read and my son has still had a book he enjoys.
        The text is still printed just how I remember it, hand written in what I would call "primary school printing" with the letters large and well formed and printed in the style you are first taught to write in when starting school - this makes the book ideal for children who are learning to read because the letters are easily recognisable.

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