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Winnie the Witch - Valerie Thomas

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Genre: Junior Books / Author: Valerie Thomas, Korky Paul / Edition: Reprint / Paperback / Reading Level: Ages 4-8 / 26 Pages / Book is published 1990-09 by Kane/Miller Book Publishers

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      10.04.2011 18:13
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      A great little story from the age of two upwards!

      Winnie the Witch - Korky Paul and Valerie Thomas


      Winner of the Children's book award, Winnie the Witch is about a witch who LOVES the colour black. She lives in a black house with black carpets, black chairs, black bed with black sheets, black pictures on the wall and even a black bath! Winnie also has a small black cat though there was only one small problem - Winnie just could not see him amongst all the blackness! So one day, Winnie decides to use a little bit of magic!

      This book comes in a lovely paper-backed form with a shiny exterior as well as interior. The images are bold in colour and cover the pages from head to toe with the text perfectly presented on top of the lighter coloured parts which is easy to see and read. Not only are the images bright and colourful, but they are also very funny to look at which adds to the appeal to both readers and non-readers. Our little one loves listening to us read the story and also looks through the pictures on her own - laughing at the funny things within each image on each page!

      The story is a very simple one, yet also very funny. It does not overcrowd each page with text, though I would say that to read this themselves, a child needs to be a good reader as it may be too complex for beginners. Children love listening to the story, though, even if they can not read themselves, and through this, I think that the age of this book can range from the younger two/three year olds right up to perhaps nine or ten!

      The RRP of this book is an average price of children's books, at £5.99 though we were lucky to have this given to us from a friend who was clearing out their cupboards. £5.99 is a decent price for this book as it is a great little story with many funny moments which appeal to both younger children as well as older ones (and I enjoy the story too!).

      I fully recommend this book as it is a delightful story with some great images.

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      18.11.2010 14:10
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      A great book for young children

      When my son and I visited the library recently he chose a few books to take home with him and one of these was Winnie the witch by Korky Paul and Valerie Thomas. I vaguely remember hearing about these stories somewhere and I think they must be quite popular as I spotted another in the series at the library. This particular book was published by Oxford University Press in 1987 but has been since reprinted many times.

      The front cover of the book shows Winnie the witch tripping over her black cat in a dark room in her house. The picture is quite busy, even on the front cover, and it continues in this manner throughout the book. My son and I really enjoyed looking at the illustrations though as there were little things that seemed to be hiding in the pictures that we were looking to spot so we would find mice, spiders, snakes or lizards that perhaps didn't stand out at first. We made this into a bit of a fun game as we were reading the book and it was a race to see who could spot something first.

      The story is about Winnie the witch who lives in a big black house where literally everything is black including chairs, her bed, and even her bath tub. However, Winnie's cat Wilbur is also black and so things are fine when Wilbur is awake as she can see his green eyes glowing but when he falls asleep she cannot see him and sits on him or trips over him! At her wits end Winnie turns him green, but then he blends into the grass outside and she cannot find him there either so she turns him into a multicoloured cat. Wilbur is very unhappy and even the birds begin to laugh at him. Winnie doesn't like seeing Wilbur upset so she changes him back to a black cat and instead changes her house into lots of lovely colours.

      The text in the book is set into the full page illustrations and on each page there is just a sentence or two so it makes it quite easy to share with young children. There are 24 pages in the book but the story is not really long or complex. My son was quite happy to sit and listen to this story despite telling me he had already been told the story at school and "The witch turns the cat green!"

      My son and I both enjoyed reading this book together and in particular liked talking about the illustrations and looking for things to spot there. I think there is great scope with this book to talk about feelings too and how Wilbur the cat may be feeling because he looks different.

      I have looked on Amazon to check on current prices and you can pick up this book for £3.88 which includes free super saver delivery. When I was looking online I noticed there are many other Winnie the witch books, including some treasuries with a few stories in and these will prove better value. I think I will consider buying some for my son for Christmas as he enjoyed this one so much and I thoroughly recommend this story book.

      Thank you for reading my review.

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        24.03.2010 19:12
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        a first foray into Winnie's world

        "Winnie the Witch" is a pretty good book to start with to introduce young readers to the fantastic series of books by Valerie Thomas (with illustrations by Korky Paul) featuring this character at their heart. This particular book is the first we acquired; since being introduced to the world of Winnie my daughter has both enjoyed having these stories read to her and reading them herself.

        Winnie, lives in a house with a black cat, as I am sure many ladies of her profession do. What's wonderful about Winnie is that she is a likeable and non-scary Witch who is always getting into various scrapes, with her trusty black cat Wilbur. In this story we meet Winnie and learn that everything in her house is black, from the sheets to the bath, there are wonderfully detailed images of her house to accompany the prose, which is both simple and attractive to children. The pictures are line-drawn and fittingly black and spiky, full of wonderful touches of humour. Winnie has a framed picture of a spider on her black wall, toads and other creatures pop into each page, Winnie's house is undoubtedly Witch-like without being remotely fear inducing.

        The most wonderfully drawn character in this book is Wilbur, Winnie's long suffering cat. In this tale, Winnie finds that in her black house her cat is hard to spot when his eyes are closed and so she keeps falling over him or, worse still, sitting on him. Wielding her trusty wand she decides to make him coloured to solve the problem, but finds that a green cat can still get lost on her non-black lawn and resorts to painting him lots of colours. I don't have a cat, but the illustrator has managed to capture a complete look of disgust on Wilbur's face that I would imagine is pretty authentic. When Wilbur looks so silly that even the birds laugh at him, Winnie is worried that her cat is miserable and has to think of a way to make him happy, and with a very loud "ABRACADABRA", Winnie sets about putting things right, something which she seems to have to regularly do in other books in the series as life in Winnie's world is never simple, and always full of humour.

        I heard about this book before I ever saw it - it was a firm school favourite that my daughter was desperate to have. As soon as we read this book together I could see the appeal to children, there's a good mix of humour and a strong story, coupled with those great illustrations. It's great too, as the mum of girls, to read a story with a strong heroine who isn't pink or sporting a pair of fairy wings. Winnie is a determined individual with a soft spot for her cat and a very likeable character indeed.

        This book is great bedtime story length, and the vocabulary is neither too challenging for early readers nor too simplistic for the age for which it is pitched, 4-8. I've already mentioned how much we love the illustrations, talking about them adds to the story, I love the way that the characters seem to move on the page, the pictures and the story go together perfectly.

        I would totally recommend this book as a fantastic addition to the library of any child starting to move on from shorter picture or board books, Winnie has a special place in our hearts in this house and I think all children should visit Winnie's world, in book form. We love Winnie!

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          19.01.2010 01:49
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          A good buy at £3.99

          Winnie the Witch seems to have made a powerful spell (by accident maybe), she has captured the attention of Year 2 (6 and 7 year olds), at the primary school my granddaughter attends.

          We first heard of Winnie when the teacher suggested that the children may like to visit the website at www. winnie-the-witch.com .This was very succesful, its a nice website, packed with things to do, and we heard all about Winnie, and her cat Wilbur.

          I offered to buy a Winnie the Witch book when next passing W.H. Smith.This offer was very enthusiastically received. I made an effort to do this, as I think any book that can be found that children love, can only be a good thing. The actual books which fire their imagination vary from generation to generation, go with the flow I say, as you can't make them like something they are'nt really in tune with. I used to like William books, and later The Sword in the Stone, my daughter enjoyed The Raggy Dolls (remember them?) and Roald Dahl, before moving on to Harry Potter. My mum would have opted for Little Women or What Katy Did, I think.

          Anyway, I remembered my promise when last in town, and popped into WH Smith. I located the Winnie books, and bought one, priced at £3.99.It is worth pointing out that many girly comics cost only slightly less than this, I wouldn't deprive my granddaughter of these, but I think a real book is a good alternative.

          The book I chose was called Winnie the Twit. It is a slim paperback, ideal given the concentraton span of the average 6 year old.It is written by Laura Owen and illustrated by Korky Paul, published by Oxford University Press.

          We read the first chapter as a bedtime story.This is called Winnies Perfect Pet. In no time at all this little story had my granddaughter nearly rolling off the bed with giggles. According to the story a new man has moved in next door to Winnie and Wilbur. He is a HUGE man as big as a ginormous giraffe, and as rude as a bees fluffy bottom!This new neighbour does at least own an amusing little dog, keen to play with Winnie. He constantly brings back Winnies wand each time she throws it. Wilbur the cat on the other hand is too lazy to play. It occurs to Winnie that if she could magic a cross between a cat and a dog, she would have a perfect animal. Ofcourse she does this, using Wilbur and next doors dog. She calls the new animal a cog, and it goes MEEEEOW-WOOF, cHEWW-CHEW MUNCH. this cog is not a satisfactory animal at all, it sniffed Winnies bottom,the it jumped up at Winnie with muddy paws, and scratchy claws.Winnie manages to undo her magic, much to the delight of the giraffe neighbour, , and "give us a kiss Wilbur" says Winnie.

          This is a simple little story which I would describe as being gloriously silly. And that is some of its appeal, as 6 or 7 year olds LOVE being silly, even though fluffs and bottoms may have limited appeal to us older people,every 6 year old knows better. And this is only the start, as there are 3 more stories in this book for them to enjoy, entitled "Winnie fixes it" , "Winnies School Dinner" and "Winnie the Twit".

          The next day Winnie was still a topic of conversation for our 6 year old.And how funny the book is. I hope it may help to lay the foundation for a love of books, and would recommend the Winnie books for this age group. A young child can have the story read, but will also help to read the sentences.

          5 stars from me.

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            09.11.2009 01:12
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            Brilliant books for kids

            I bought a book of three Winnie The Witch stories last weekend as my daughters had birthday money to spend and they leapt at the books as they've seen them at nursery.
            So, having a flick through at the illustrations and the general quantity of words and the way it's written, I decided it looked a good option and the girls were delighted.
            Since then we've read the book a number of times and I suspect I'll know it off by heart soon.

            Winnie the Witch seems to be the stereotype, she lives alone with her black cat in a spooky house but from that point onward there is no stereotype. Winnie is eclectic in her tastes and decisions. Because her house is black, her furnishings black and carpets black she decides that the unfortunate cat should no longer be black as he causes a number of health and safety hazards around the house. Wilbur, the cat, ends up a myriad of colours and styles.

            At this stage my girls are laughing at the poor cat and his expressions in the brilliant illustrations, clearly disenchanted with his chameleon colouring.

            The writing style is clear and flowing, the words all appropriate and easily comprehended by young children.

            All in all I'd strongly recommend them. It's a series which bypassed me, in 1987 when Valerie Thomas and Korky Paul had their first success I was reading Sweet Dreams and Judy Blume, Winnie is aimed at 4-7 year olds.
            My 4 year old children are happy to have them read over and over and I suspect Winnie might be instrumental in the early reading in our house.

            The books prices vary from £4 to £14, unfortunately most of them are around the £8 mark for quite a slender volume so I'd recommend the collection of 6 stories in 1 book at £13.98.

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              26.08.2009 10:13
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              Fantastic picture book for all the family

              Winnie the Witch has been in our family for seven years, and is still thoroughly enjoyed by all. She is a fabulous character in the series of 11 picture books titled "Winnie The Witch..." written and illustrated by Korky Paul and Valerie Thomas. Our book is well read and has that 'worn' look about it, always a sign of a super read.

              **The Author and Illustrator**

              Valerie Thomas is the talented writer behind these great witch adventures. The illustrator, Korky Paul, is brilliant. His work brings the story to life, and adds so much detail to each picture, it keeps the reader amused and entertained. It actually takes quite a while to turn each page, as my boys are so intent at looking at the pictures, and discussing all the fun things they observe. This book was a winner for The Children's Book Award.

              *The Story*

              The original story, which this book is, involves a nice witch, Winnie, and her cat Wilbur. Now Winnie, being a witch, lives in a black house, has a black cat, and everything else is black, apart from her attire (which I will discuss later). Here the problems begin. Poor old Wilbur, the cat, cannot be seen as he is as black as the furniture. Winnie sits on him, then trips over him on the black mat. The only solution, to Winnie, is to turn the long suffering Wilbur green!

              Winnie and green Wilbur are now happy. Winnie can see him wherever she goes within the house. But on one sunny day, when Wilbur decides to sleep in the grass, you've guest it, Winnie does not see him and falls head over heals into a thorn bush. Furious Winnie, waves her wand and turns poor Wilbur Multi coloured!

              Wilbur goes into hiding at the top of a tree. Even the birds are laughing at him. He feels ridiculous and Winnie feels bad too. There is only one solution....

              *Educationally*

              This book is for children from 2 years and up. The reason I have said such a young age is because it involves colours and counting (when waving the wand). It is simply written with lots of repetition, great for identifying new words for early readers. The story involves some problem solving for the young listener, asking them "what would they do, to help Winnie and Wilbur?"

              Winnie also makes Wilbur sad. In the end she realizes that she loves Wilbur and does not want him to be sad. She had done wrong, and needs to put it right. Another nice message to get across to the children.

              *Illustrations*

              Winnie the Witch is enjoyed by all children. She is a fantastic character and illustrated brilliantly. She is a good witch at heart, but not a brilliant witch in mind. Poor old Wilbur went through enough stress, and the solution was easy. Whilst everything else she owns is black, she wears bright stripey stockings, blue and purple clothing, with a lovely colourful witches hat, along with a touch of black lipstick.

              As I mentioned earlier, the book is packed with fine detail. New objects or weird creatures, snakes, frogs and lizards, are always being found in the background of the pictures. Winnie's facial expressions are priceless, she is a real character. As for Wilbur, you just want to give him a cuddle when he is miserable.

              *My Opinion*

              Every time time Winnie makes a spell she picks up her magic wand, waves it so many times and shouts ABRACADABRA. At this point in the story, I get my kids to shut their eyes, wave the wand as instructed, and they know what to shout! You can make this story so much fun and very interactive.

              Winnie is a lovable witch, whom has a great story to tell. I have a few of her books and each one is just as enjoyable. Winnie and Wilbur make a great team, and always look out for each other in the end.

              I would recommend this book to all families. It really is extremely enjoyable and lots of fun.

              It is published by Oxford University Press and can cost £4.99.

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                25.05.2009 17:27

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                an approachable, zany story with awesome pictures & a great ending.

                Korky Paul, despite regularly being credited first , is the illustrator & not the writer of these fantastic picture books: that credit goes to Valerie Thomas. The story of Winnie the Witch is very funny & neatly written, but it's fair to say that it's the pictures above all that make the books what they are.
                In this first book of the series we meet Winnie, who lives in a magnificently-drawn, rambling house that is entirely black: walls, furniture, pots & pans, you name it. Unfortunately her cat Wilbur is black too which causes a few accidents, until Winnie decides to introduce a bit of colour & things go very wrong for a while until she finally finds the answer.
                What I love about this book is the enormous imagination that has gone into creating Winnie's world, & the combination of painstaking, beautifully detailed background with vibrant, zippy characters that nearly jump off the page. Winnie looks bonkers but she's lovable & determined to get it right, & you can't help rooting for poor Wilbur.
                A book that appeals to my 8-year old as much now as it did when she was 4, & one I'm happy to read aloud many times over.

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                14.04.2009 10:27
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                A very good story to share with younger children

                Over the years my family has acquired a large number of books, and I for some reason do not like to throw out books, most of ours have seen better days and would not really be suitable to pass on to others. However we keep our books in a cupboard in the main family room, the cupboard is now at the point of overflowing, the door will not close, and every now and then my older two children take the books out and have a look through them and we discover some family favourites. My son recently rediscovered the Korky Paul book "Winnie the Witch", hence the review.

                My older son is 5 and not quite at the age where he can read alone, but we do read together and he does recognise more and more words in the story. Winnie the Witch had been a favourite of ours when he was younger and now that he is helping me with the words it is a favourite once again.

                Winnie, as the title states is a witch, but I don't think she is a very successful witch, most of her spells or actions seem to go a little awry. Winnie has a cat called Wilbur and poor Wilbur often comes off the worst when Winnie casts a spell. There is now a series of Winnie the Witch books, but ours is the first in the series and introduces us to Winnie and her cat. Winnie lives in a black house, with black carpets, furniture bedding etc, even Wilbur is black. This is where the problems start and Winnie has problems distinguishing anything in the blackness so this leads to several mishaps.

                Winnie the Witch is illustrated by Valerie Thomas and the illustrations play nearly as important a role in the story as the words. The story is written in short sentences, a bit like blank verse, there are perhaps only one or two sentences per two page spread, the illustrations definitely serve to enhance the story and within each illustration there is a lot going on. Even though there are few words on each page there is an awful lot of story to be told and you can have great fun with your child looking at the pictures and building up the story.

                My son loves this story and we enjoy great times reading and looking at the story. Winnie is not a scary witch so the book is suitable for bedtime reading, although I find that because there is so much going on in the story and pictures that it can take quite a while to read, so give yourself plenty of time to read, look and enjoy. This is a book that can be rediscovered as your child gets older, my youngest child is 18 months and is starting to enjoy stories so we will be keeping Winnie so as he can enjoy the story when he gets a little older.

                Our Winnie the Witch was published by Oxford University Press and the cover price is £5.99, although I think we got this book as part of a set, I have seen Winnie available in lots of shops and can also be borrowed from the library. A very enjoyable read for younger children.

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                  27.03.2009 20:20
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                  A lovely introduction to an amusing set of quality books.

                  WINNIE THE WITCH

                  ***What's it all about?***

                  This is a quality children's book about guess who - 'Winnie the Witch'. Although there are other books in this series, this is perhaps the one that is the most well known. I will say from the start that the illustrator deserves as much credit, if not more than the writer. The book is written and illustrated by the partnership of Valerie Thomas and Korky Paul.

                  This story introduces us to Winnie, her cat and her home. As your would perhaps expect her home is dour and scary; it is completely decorated in black. As her cat is black, this presents her with a problem... He is completely disguised by the surroundings whenever he is asleep! Winnie sits on him and trips over him and decides that a spell might be in order. She turns her cat, Wilbur to green - problem solved, or so she thought. Everything was fine, until he had to go out into the garden.

                  Once again Winnie trips over him and decides in temper to fix Wilbur once and for all. Her magic spell turns him into a multicolour cat. Wilbur isn't too happy with this, as he is ridiculed even by the birds! She isn't a cruel witch and doesn't want Wilbur to be unhapppy so she turns him back to his original black. She then comes up with a novel idea for solving the problem, which I won't tell you about because I don't want to spoil things for you grown-ups!

                  ***Opinion***

                  I think that this is a lovely book for young children. It is suitable to read to a young child of 3 (nothing too scary in there) - right up to around age 7, when a child might be able to attempt independent reading. The illustrations are beautiful, right from the beginning, with a nice mix of black and white, with a splash of colour thrown in. Winnie is drawn quite thin, with lovely bright stripey stockings. Some of the illustrations have an amazing amount of detail in them and there is plenty to keep a young child engrossed as the story is read aloud. There is a nice amount of text on each page and just enough repetition to allow young readers to follow and begin to join in. For example the word 'black' is used over and over.

                  Educationally there is a nice balance of key words, which young children need to know, with more adventurous vocabulary and good use of various punctuation. Small details I know, but as well as fun, I like to see what a child might learn from a book.

                  There is also the right amount of humour used in the book, both shown in the drawings and the story. The expressions on Winnie and Wilbur's face are also really funny, expecially when she trips over him! The only tiny criticism that I have is the typeface. In common with most children's books the 'a' is that which is found in Times New Roman, which I think is confusing for children just beginning to recognise the alphabet. This is only minor and it certainly doesn't detract from my 5 star rating!

                  As well as enjoying the book just for the story, I think the book offers inspiration for those children that like drawing.

                  ***Availabililty***

                  The book is published by the Oxford University Press and costs around £4.49 from Amazon, although mine was part of a six book set with cd and this is offers good value at a cost of £9.69. It is definitely worth buying as a set to keep. I should also mention that the book is of good quality paper and is bound nicely.

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                    06.12.2006 21:18
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                    A witch and her black cat solve problems of colour

                    Hallowe'en is well behind us, but the tale of Winnie the Witch is still going strong, its popularity with young children never waning. This is a beautifully illustrated and delightful story of Winnie, a somewhat comical witch, and her pet cat Wilbur.

                    Winnie does not seem to be a wicked witch, but she lives in a Gothic mansion which is totally black, inside and out. Even the bath is black, as well as the sheets and blankets. Unfortunately this causes problems, as her cat Wilbur is black with green eyes. When he is awake, Winnie can spot his green eyes amongst the blackness, but when Wilbur goes to sleep, he is blends in to the black surroundings completely. The consequence is that Winnie sometimes sits on him or trips over him.

                    Winnie realises that she could use her magic to try to solve this problem. She casts a spell that turns Wilbur into a totally green cat, and then of course he really stands out against the black interior. Alas, this is not the end of the problem: Wilbur loves to sleep on Winnie's bed but is not allowed to. Winnie of course can now spot Wilbur immediately when he does so, and in her wrath she turfs him out into the garden.

                    Can you guess what the next turn of events is? Wilbur is completely camouflaged in the grass outside, so Winnie cannot spot him here. She trips over him and falls headlong into a rosebush. Ouch!

                    Winnie decides another spell is in order. She waves her wand again, and this time Wilbur becomes a multicoloured cat: yellow, red, blue, purple..... This would seem to be the ideal solution, as he will now stand out whether in the house or the garden. But Wilbur looks ridiculous, and he knows it. He climbs to the top of the tallest tree to try to hide, but the birds are flying around and making fun of him.

                    Winnie is upset, as she really is very fond of Wilbur. She changes him back to his usual black self and tries another spell. This time she uses a little more common sense: she makes her house a multicoloured one. At last she has found the ideal solution, and Wilbur can be his normal self whilst standing out perfectly against the colourful rooms and furnishings of the house.

                    This is a delightful story with just the right amount of text per page, so that young children will not be impatient to turn to the next page before you have finished reading. Everyone feels sorry for Wilbur until he returns to his rightful black self, yet Winnie gets her fair share of sympathy too as she tumbles here and there, and obviously cares so much about her moggy.

                    To me, this is the kind of story book that adults will enjoy as much as children. The illustrations are abolutely gorgeous, from Winnie's striped stockings held up by suspenders (which we catch a glimpse of when she tumbles into the rosebush) to the details of her house with its cranky telescope on the balcony. The black mansion contrasts perfectly with vivid colour on the later pages. The illustrations cover the whole page, with a paragraph of text superimposed on them.

                    I've been reading this story aloud to three- to four-year-old children for more than six years now and they never tire of it - but then, neither do I!

                    ISBN: 0192723588
                    Published by Oxford University Press, 1998
                    32 pages
                    RRP £25 Amazon price: £16.50

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                      24.08.2006 17:04
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                      A magical read

                      'Winnie the Witch' is a picture book for young children and is written and illustrated by Korky Paul and Valerie Thomas. The story is about Winnie the Witch and her cat Wilbur - my three year old daughter is entranced by both of them!

                      The story is all about the fact that Winnie lives in a house which is totally black and that her cat Wilbur is totally black too! This means that where ever Wilbur is Winnie is unable to see him as he is camouflaged by everything else. Winnie deciders that the only way to solve the problem is to change Wilbur's colour - which she does to green which is great because she can now see Wilbur until he goes outside... She then decides that the solution is to make him multicoloured which upsets Wilbur so much that he climbs the tallest tree and won't come down! Eventually Winnie decides that the solution is actually a lot simpler then she first thought (but I won't give away the end!)

                      This is a well written story and the illustrations are fantastic. Every picture has so much detail and so much to talk about and like so many other good picture books, the pictures tell so much more of the story. The illustrations of both Winnie and Wilbur are superb. Winnie's outfit has to be seen to be believed and Wilbur's facial expressions say so much!

                      Every time Winnie casts a spell she utters the famous words 'ABRACADABRA!' which my three year old loves joining in with (even though she can't say it properly!) She loves talking about the story and in fact has read it so much she can actually tell me the story.

                      Our copy is from Oxford University Press and the RRP is £4.99 although I bought it as part of a set from The Book People (who i have also reviewed). It has a strong card cover and good quality paper pages.

                      We have since added to our Winnie collection and bought and loved 'Winnie's New Computer', 'Winnie at the Seaside' and 'Winnie in Winter'. All of them are equally good and equally loved by our daughter!

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                        22.02.2006 11:07
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                        Great story book with detailed illustrations

                        A long standing favourite. I bought my copy way back in 1991, when first born was two, and still read it now, nearly 14 years later, to little miss.


                        **THE STORY**

                        "Winnie the witch lived in a black house in the forest"

                        So starts the story and we learn that in Winnie's house, everything was black…strangely enough, though, on the first double page picture, everything is indeed black, but Winnie's clothes are purple and blue.

                        However, Winnie's cat,Wilbur, was black "And that is how the trouble began…"

                        If Wilbur sat in a chair with his eyes open, Winnie could see him, but if he was asleep in a black chair, of course, she could not see him, and sat on him! Similarly, if he fell asleep on the carpet, Winnie tripped over him.

                        After a nasty fall, Winnie decides to remedy the situation, and casts a spell on Wilbur. ABRACADABRA!! He becomes a green cat, and Winnie could see him wherever he was. However, and this was Wilbur's mistake, he lay on the bed, and of course, he was not allowed on the bed, so he got thrown outside. Could he be seen? In the long grass, of course not, and Winnie tripped right over him.

                        Poor Wilbur, "Winnie was furious" She waved her magic wand and Wilbur became a multi coloured cat. This time, Winnie could see him wherever he was, but Wilbur looked ridiculous and even the birds laughed at him. He was miserable and stayed up the tree day and night.

                        This sets Winnie into a quandary because she loved Wilbur and hated for him to be unhappy. What could she do?

                        The clever witch waved her magic wand and made Wilbur black again, then waved her wand again, and ABRACADABRA, her whole house and everything in it became multi coloured.

                        Result! Winnie could see her black cat wherever he sat in the multi coloured house.



                        **ILLUSTRATIONS**

                        The illustrations definitely appeal to children. They are bright and cheerful and the expressions on Wilbur's face are excellent. When he is miserable, he really does look miserable.

                        Winnie is a "proper" witch with her black lips, wispy black hair and witch hat.

                        The detail in the pictures are something to look out for. Children take great delight in spotting the frog just disappearing round the corner and the snake wrapped around the umbrella stand, as well as the lizards crawling around the shelves.

                        The house is illustrated so that it does look spooky and is just as a witch's house should be, with large pictures and cobwebs.

                        Most of the illustrations are large double page spread pictures with enough detail to expand the text and encourage children to use their imaginations.



                        **PUBLISHER AND OTHER INFORMATION**

                        My copy cost £2.95 but check it out on amazon for real bargains

                        Published by: Oxford University Press
                        ISBN: 0-19 272197





                        **OTHER BOOKS ILLUSTRATED BY KORKY PAUL**

                        If you have the book and enjoyed the illustrations, have a look for these books…

                        Call Me Sam
                        The Cat That Scratched
                        The Dog That Dug
                        The Duck That Had No Luck
                        The Wonky Donkey

                        **WEBSITE**

                        www.korkypaul.com

                        Has a lot of information on all of the books he has illustrated- I didn't know there were so many.
                        Plus, if you are interested, there is information on the author.

                        **RECOMMENDATION**

                        The book is jam packed with amusing details and visual jokes. Children love to "spy" extra bits of detail and the story flows along with the illustrations. The pictures of the house when it is black are in direct contrast to the house it becomes at the end and very young children can talk about the colours as the story is read to them.

                        Winnie is a lovable witch and children are keen to think of ways to help Wilbur when Winnie realizes she has made him sad.

                        Although the book was first published in 1987, the style of the writing and the illustrations have ensured that it has not become dated and I have read this on many many occasions to children from Nursery to about Year 4. Depending on the age of the child(ren) there is something to be "got out" of it. This is definitely not a book to be confined to a very small age range…read it and enjoy the expressions on the characters faces and the excellent illustrations. Little miss always finds the characters faces hilarious when Winnie sits on Wilbur or trips over him, and children tend to get a bit gleeful when "there is going to be trouble now"


                        I would highly recommend it, and if you enjoy it, it's worth looking at the other Winnie the Witch books, all illustrated and written to appeal to children's imaginations and sense of fun.

                        Thanks for reading

                        Daniela x

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                      • Product Details

                        Winnie the Witch uses her magic to solve some very practical problems. But the results are never quite as she imagined. One day after turning everything in her house black to hide the mess, she discovers she can longer see her black cat Wilbur. So she decides to use a bit of magic, and that's when the trouble really starts.