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The Princess and the Wizard - Julia Donaldson

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Author: Julia Donaldson / Format: Paperback / Date of publication: 07 September 2007 / Genre: Picture Books / Publisher: Pan Macmillan / Title: The Princess and the Wizard / ISBN 13: 9781405090766 / ISBN 10: 1405090766 / Alternative EAN: 9781405053136

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    7 Reviews
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      22.09.2013 15:18
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      A great read for little girls - with glitter on each page

      ===The Product===

      Large paperback book approximately 10 inches square.
      The Princess and the Wizard.
      Has shiny covers and a sticker that states ''glitter on every page'.
      Copyright 2006 and printed in China.
      Macmillan Chidren's Books.
      2nd edition (7 Sep 2007)
      ISBN: 978-1405090766
      Author - Julia Donaldson.
      Illustrator - Lynda Monks.



      ===Cost===

      I had a bargain and paid £1.75 on Amazon.
      Full price is £6.99 but currently selling in Amazon for £4.
      Second hand is £2.81 delivered.



      ===My Opinion===

      This book is by Julia Donaldson, author of The Gruffalo.
      I must admit that not having young children any more I am slightly out of touch with children's books but I found this on sale for the fantastic price of £1.75 so bought it for my great niece. She is three and into fairies, princesses and pink! So I often try and pick up bargains to have some new items to entertain her when she visits.
      I was not sure what the book would be like when I ordered it as saying it had glitter on every page was a bit of a surprise and so I was very pleasantly surprised when the book arrived.

      The book does indeed have glitter on every page - not all over but strategically placed such as on the wizard's cloak and hat or the princess' dress or tiara. However this is not like the glitter we use at hoe that can be rubbed off and is more subtle - and it will not come off on either your own or your children's hands. In fact it is an attractive additional feature on each page - enhancing the various images such as fish, fox and grasshopper.

      I bought this book for my little great niece and she loves it. The book is big and colourful and there are little images to look at in the pictures as well - which adds to the enjoyment and gives you more to talk about. This book is lovely to read to children and in later years they will be able to read it themselves.
      I don't think it matters if I give a little of the story as this is aimed at children after all.
      At the beginning it is the Princess' seventh Birthday party - but the wicked wizard is angry that he was not invited so turns everyone to stone - all except Princess Eliza. However her fairy godmother arrives and gives her seven chances to escape from the wizard - 'the Princess may try seven times to escape, by changing her colour and changing her shape'.
      So we can count the seven chances through the book.

      Also each time Eliza tries to escape she changes into a different animal or insect of a different colour - so one time she is a blue fish and another a yellow chick. So while reading the story you get a chance to talk and colours and count the number of times she has tried to escape. One picture of her in the cellar does have a few spiders - but they are not too scary looking - and the little mice scattered throughout the story are quite cute.

      Every time that Eliza is discovered the wizard's magic book comes up with a rhyme to find her. However the very last time she has a chance to escape Eliza finds a way to outwit the wizard - he throws his magic book away in disgust and the spell is broken - so all the people that were turned to stone are returned to normal and Eliza comes back to her own party where they end up eating her Birthday cake.
      As well as am interesting little read and colourful pictures to look at, there are lots of extra little details on the pages to spot, the glitter, ladybirds, mice and caterpillars.
      As well as picking out the colours and various animals the days of the week are also mentioned so you are discussing various things without the child even realising - the best way to learn.

      The story covers 29 full pages so is great value and a good read - either in the day or at bedtime. Definitely a girly book, but one that they will keep coming back to - my niece loves to snuggle down to read through this and rub her fingers over the little glittery bits.

      I know I had a great bargain but even at £4 it is well worth getting.



      ===Star Rating===

      5 stars.



      ===Would I Recommend?===

      Yes.



      ===Website===

      www.panmacmillan.com

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        12.04.2013 11:01
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        The princess and the wizard

        Julia Donadson, the author of The Gruffalo is one of our favourite children's writers and we have a number of her books, including this lovely book entitled The Princess and the Wizard. It was given to my little girl as a present and although it is geared more towards girls, it is something my little boy enjoys hearing at bedtime too because their is an evil wizard as one of the main characters.

        It follows the same sort of storyline as most princess stories do, there is an evil wizard who locks up the princess who must then use her special powers to escape back to her loving family. The synopsis on the back of the book goes as such, "The Princess must try seven times to escape, By changing her colour and changing her shape. Can Princess Eliza find a way to outwit the wicked Wizard before it's too late?"

        This reminds me a bit like a Cinderella/Rupunzel story because Princess Eliza is trapped in a tall dark castle and the wizard makes her do lots of chores around the place when she disobeys him and tries to run away. What I like about this story is that it introduces colours in a fun way as Eliza changes into different animals that are different colours to try and disguise herself. Its a good way of hearing about colours in a story but also seeing them in print and in their true colour too and also what animals to associate with those colours.

        For example, one time Eliza turns herself into a yellow chick to hide in some straw. Its here that Donaldson includes some of her wonderful rhyming poems which she does so well. The wizard has a magic book and this book gives him powers to be able to see exactly what Eliza has done. So, for example the wizard reads in his book:

        The straw in the farmyard
        is yellow and thick
        Princess Eliza's
        disguised as a chick.

        Eliza also turns herself into a green grasshopper, an orange fox and a purple butterfly to name but a few.

        Another nice touch to this book is that it contains glitter and sparkly sections on each page which I think goes really well with the princess theme and also makes the pages stand out and seem quite exciting and magical to a little three year old.

        We have this book in paperback version. It has an ISBN 978-1-4050-9076-6 and costs £6.99.

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          11.01.2013 15:06
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          A fantastic modern day fairytale with a lovely timeless satisfying story and great pictures.

          My daughter picked this book from the library, and she liked it so much that I bought her her own copy. She is 6 (bus was 5 when first read) and can read the story to herself, but mainly enjoys sharing it and talking about the pictures.

          Warning - the rest of this review contains spoilers about the story :-)
          The story of The Princess and the Wizard is one of those extremely satisfying children's tales that is cleverly simple. It is the princess' birthday, and she is captured from her party by a wizard. She has to try and escape him by changing her colour and her shape seven times. Each time she changes herself (e.g. into a blue fish, or a green grasshopper) he captures her using his magic book that tells him where she is. The last time, she think sof a clever idea... :-) That in itself is a clever yet simple story, but there is an added touch which really appeals to young children's love of repetition while still keeping interest - she returns to the palace by changing back through all the forms she had just been, and finally back into a princess. It is comparable to something like "We're going on a bear hunt" where the family return through all the places they came through.

          I would recommend the story for children aged 3-6 primarily, but children slightly older will still enjoy re-reading I'm sure. It is a true modern-day classic, and very appealing!

          The illustrations, by Lydia Monks, and colourful and really appeal to modern day girls! Some pages have lots of bright pink, but throughout the story there is a great mix and it really sets the scene for the book. and pictures have textured glittery parts to them (my 2 year old girl loves to feel them!) which make it seem very special and quality. It would be a great book for a gift.

          Overall, this book is excellent quality in terms of story, illustrations and publication. It comes highly recommended!

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          12.03.2011 09:49
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          A delightful book

          We are huge fans of Julia Donaldson in our house and I'm often on the look out for more of her books to share with my daughter. As it was my youngest daughter's sixth birthday last week, I spotted a couple of this lovely author's books that we had not yet read and gave them as little birthday extras. One book was a charming looking one called The Princess and the Wizard which Natalie has really enjoyed reading especially because there I lots of glitter on every page!

          At the start of the book, I was a little reminded of the traditional tale, Sleeping Beauty. This I because Princess Eliza is having a lovely birthday party in the palace with her parents and friends. However, an unwelcome guest, the wizard, arrives and is so angry that he was not invited that he turns everyone to stone apart from Princess Eliza who he imprisons in his tall dark castle. However, Princess Eliza's fairy godmother is trying to look after her and gives her seven chances to escape if she is able to change her colour and the shape without the wizard detecting her.

          There then follows Eliza's different attempts to escape. On Monday she transforms into a blue fish and hides in the moat that surrounds the castle. Sadly though, she is unsuccessful and the wizard spots her. On Tuesday she changes into a yellow chick and hides in some straw. Yet again she is unsuccessful! This goes on through the week with, each day, Eliza transforming herself but being found by the wizard. She despairs of ever escaping. However, she comes to realise that the wizard is actually cheating and with this knowledge, she devises a cunning plan in order to trick him and make her escape! Will she be successful? You'll just have to find a child to read this book with in order to find out!

          This delightful story is extremely engaging from the very first page. The simple tale with its sense of repetition makes it very much seem like a modern day fairy tale and as I mentioned earlier, at the start, there is that very strong resemblance to Sleeping Beauty which many children will probably recognise. Also with typical good and bad characters, some use of magic and hopefully a happy ending there is indeed a strong fairy tale feel to this story. The language used is reasonably simple which makes it suitable either for reading to younger children or for older more confident readers to read for themselves.

          In many of her books, we are used to Julia Donaldson writing in rhyme. However, The Princess and the Wizard is written in a more straightforward prose, although it is inspersed with some wonderful rhyming couplets too.

          In The Princess and The Wizard, Julia Donaldson has not teamed up with her more usual illustrator (Axel Scheffler) but has joined forces with Lydia Monks who has provided some quite charming illustrations to accompany the story. The pictures are all bright and colourful and the hint of glitter on each page really enhances them. There is also a quirky element to the illustrations which my daughter really appreciates.

          Overall this great story is a lot of fun and is probably a must for all Julia Donaldson fans - well the girls anyway! I don't think that this is really a book for the boys!

          The paperback has a RRP of £6.99. However, I bought it as part of a BOGOF offer at Tesco which made it very good value.

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            10.03.2011 11:48
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            Every night we have two bedtime stories one each which they get to choose any arguments and Mummy gets to choose and this is one I pick and a firm favourite with booth my girls.

            Author

            This book is written by Julia Donaldson author of the best selling Gruffolo, Gruffolo's child and zog to name a few we own a lot of Julia Donaldson books and I was surprised to see this was by her as it is very different to her others far more girly.

            The Story
            Princess Eliza is celebrating her Birthday when the Evil Wizard appears and is angry at not being invited he turns the guests to stone but her godmother gives her seven chances to escape by changing her colour and shape.

            Princess Eliza changes her shape into different things but each time she is caught and punished by the wizard my daughters love it when he makes her darn all his socks which have holes because of his pointy toe nails a chorus of yuck that's disgusting greets this!

            Illustrations
            The illustrations in this book are beautifully done it is very sparkly and immediately appealed to my eldest who received it two years ago for her Birthday and one we have read twice in the last week alone the illustrations are by Lydia Monks they are very childlike princess has big red cheeks they are charming and really appeal to my girls.

            Cost and Stockist
            This books is available from Amazon at £6.75 including Cd you can of course buy the book from all good bookshops and I would not hesitate to recommend this story it's a classic tale told with fun and sparkle another brilliant story from this very talented author.

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              12.02.2010 18:47
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              All round pleaser!!

              The princess may try seven times to escape, by changing her colour and changing her shape....

              That is the theme of this story. Princess Eliza is captured by the mean old Wizard after she doesnt invite him to her birthday party. He gives her seven chances to escape - and princess eliza tries them all before realising that he has a magic book that tells him what she has changed in to.

              This is a lovely story from Julia Donaldson that my three year old daughter loves. It isnt rhyming as most of Donaldsons other work is - but dont let that discourage you from this book. My daughter loves it regardless.

              The illustrations arent done by Donaldsons usual partner in crime - Axel Scheffler, which again may be a negative. But dont be put off - Lydia Monks does a wonderful job with beautiful, textured illustrations.

              Also, dont be put off by its pink cover - true it is about a princess, but the wizard will provide enough entertainment for the average little boy to enjoy this tale too.

              All in all - a lovely book from an amazing author!!!

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                19.08.2008 22:59
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                Another gem from Julia Donalsdson

                The Princess and The Wizard - another wonderful book by Julia Donaldson.

                This is another one of my daughter's faves although perhaps the story is a little bit long for her at the moment but she loves the pictures, especially the glittery ones.

                It's the story of Princess Eliza, who gets captured & whisked away (on her 7th birthday of all days!) by a wicked wizard who likes turning people to stone. Luckily before she is taken away, her fairy godmother tells the wizard that the princess will have seven chances to escape 'by changing her colour and changing her shape'. The wizard isn't impressed and replies 'changing her colour and changing her shape will never help Princess Eliza escape'.

                So Princess Eliza gets seven chances to escape and each day she changes herself into something new, such as a blue fish, yellow chick, green grasshopper... But the wizard always finds her and takes her back to his castle to do some horrible work for him. On her final chance to escape, Eliza realises that the Wizard has a magic book which tells him where she is hiding. So of course, she has a brilliant plan - and it works, but I won't give away this part of the story!!! So the wizard is really angry when he can't find her, and throws his magic book away! And Princess Eliza is free to go back to her birthday party and finish off her birthday cake.

                Every time Eliza changes herself into something new, there is a little rhyme to go with it (e.g. The straw in the farmyard is yellow and thick, Princess Eliza's disguised as a chick), which I think is great for kids as they will learn this part of the story really easily and will be able to read along with you. Another nice thing about it is that she changes her colour each time as well, and the pages are usually illustrated in that colour, for example, when she's a yellow chick, the page is mainly yellow, and then wizard makes her darn some yellow socks, so colours can also be learnt through the story.

                The illustrations are lovely, really bright and colourful and they really fill the pages. This is one of the reasons my daughter loves the book so much because she just can't take her eyes off the pages, and she likes to touch the glittery bits. She is just starting to enjoy the actual story now as well (at 19 months) instead of just the pictures so I'm sure this book will be on her bookshelf for a few years to come.

                The actual story is 29 pages, so as you can imagine it is quite long so is ideally suited for an older toddler, although as I say my daughter is starting to enjoy the story now at 19 months, and has enjoyed the pictures for many months previous to that, so really the age range I would say could be from 12 months and upwards.

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