EMWF Kids & Teens: Book Reviews

Sergeant Billy  

By Mireille Messier, Illustrated by Kass Reich
Reviewed by:
Hunter (7), Izzy (10) Jude (6), Mason (7) 

What is the book about?
Hunter: Sergeant Billy was about a cute goat that was borrowed from a little girl named Daisy that went to war as a mascot with the 5th Battalion and then became a decorated war hero. Billy travels with the soldiers from Canada, to Europe and he experienced the war – he got trench foot, he went to jail and was shell-shocked, but he didn’t die in the war and was returned home to Daisy.
Izzy and Jude: The book is about a goat who when to the First World War.
Mason: The book is about a goat named Billy who went to war with the Fifth Battalion in the WW1. He belonged to a girl named Daisy. During the war he travelled to England and France keeping the soldiers company and helping to stay happy. He stayed in the trenches and ate what he could find. He returned to his owner after the war covered with metals.

What do you like about this book?
Hunter: I liked this book because it is a true story that had a happy ending, and the goat is really cute.
Izzy: I liked that it was about WWI, because I love books about history
Jude: I love goats
Mason: I like this book because it is a true story and it is cool that a goat went to war.

What is your favourite part of the story?
Hunter: My favourite part in the book is when the war is over and the soldiers are celebrating Billy who they think is a good luck charm. But he’s not a good luck charm, he’s a goat that brought them happiness when they felt sad and missed their families back in Canada because they were fighting in war.
Izzy: I liked that he didn’t mind being in the trenches.
Jude: I like that he comes home at the end.
Mason: My favourite part of the story was when Daisy gave Billy to the soldiers because it helped the soldiers be focused and happy.

What do you like about the illustrations?
Hunter: I like everything about the illustrations, they kind of look realistic and the goat is cute. I also really like how the illustrator drew the noses on the soldiers.
Izzy and Jude: They look like a painting and Billy is cute!
Mason: I like the details in the illustrations of the boat because it is big and colourful. The colours are dark and old like the war times. I like to paint watercolours and I like the way it looks.

Why should kids read this book?
Hunter: Kids should read this book because it’s an interesting true story about an animal’s adventures in a war, and it has really good illustrations.  
Izzy and Jude: It is funny that they borrow a goat and Billy does some funny things like eating important documents.  It’s important that the soldiers had something that made them happy when they were doing something scary like going to war.  And it has a happy ending.
Mason: Kids should read the book because it is interesting and gives information about the war and it is a true story which was surprising to me. I did not know that animals went to war and I think other kids will think the animals going to war is cool. I took it to school and shared it with my grade 2 class. They liked it too.

If you could ask the author or illustrator a question, what would it be?
Hunter: A question I would ask the author is: Why did you want to make a book about the war?
Izzy: What other books have you written/illustrated? (EMWF: Pssst… Mireille is also presenting her new book Treasure at our festival in September)
Jude: How old are you? 
Mason: If I could ask the author and illustrator a question I would want to know how old they are? Why did you write about a goat?

Moon Wishes

By Guy & Patricia Storms, Illustrated by Milan Pavlović
Reviewed by Hunter, 7 years old

What is the book about?
Moon Wishes is about a kind moon giving light and guiding the way for people and creatures everywhere in the world who might need help.

What do you like about this book?
I think the book has really great illustrations of different animals from around the world.

What is your favourite part of the story?
I liked the part in the story where the happy moon is shimmering over the polar bears and protecting them from climate change.

What do you like about the illustrations?
I liked the fact that the illustrations look realistic and really pop off the page, and the creatures are happy and cute.

Why should kids read this book?
Kids should read this book because it’s a good bedtime story poem about being helpful.

If you could ask the author or illustrator a question, what would it be?
I would ask the illustrator: What inspired you to draw certain animals for the words? I would ask the author: What inspired you to write such a beautiful poem?

Gargantua (Jr!)

By Kevin Sylvester
A review by students in Mrs. Darling’s, Mrs. Lush’s and Mrs. Meagher’s classes at Rockwood Centennial Public School.

What was the story about?
The mommy breaks down old buildings and then the baby tries and it almost falls on him. The mommy says, “Maybe wait til you’re a bit bigger!” –Cara, age 5

In the end the momma helped the baby to fire the old buildings. They worked together as team. –Issy, age 4

What was your favourite part?
I liked when the momma was fixing the buildings. –Maggie, age 4

I liked when the mom came to help the baby. –Alannah, age 5
I liked when that baby dragon snuck out of the water to go break down old buildings. –Tyson, age 5

What did you like about the illustrations?
I like the fire pictures because it was cool colours. It was a wonderful picture. –Hannah, age 5

I like the water picture. I was surprised he slept under water. –Brody, age 6
I noticed the baby spikes are yellow and the momma spikes are red. And the baby fire is red and yellow and the momma fire is blue.

What questions do you have for the author?
Why did the mom change from breaking things to fixing things? –Henry, age 6

Why are the spikes a different colour? Why is the mom’s fire different than the babies? –Cara, age 5
We also had a big group debate about whether it was a dinosaur or a dragon!

Why should kids read?
Your brain will grow. –Audrey, age 4

It will help me learn to read. I know my letters now. –Issy, age 4,
You will learn stuff. –Alannah, age 5

Thank you Rockwood Centennial!

Harry’s Hiccups

by Jean Little, illustrated by Joe Weissmann
Reviewed by Jasper, 5 years old

Join us for Forest of Reading Comes to Guelph! on May 11, 2019 at Guelph Public Library – Main Library
with authors Jess Keating, Deborah Kerbel, Jean Little and illustrator Joe Weissmann

So Jasper, what’s this book about?
He hiccuped! And then his dad said drink some water, nine swallows without breathing.  Um, then he tried it (laughs) and he still hiccuped.

What do you like about the story?
I like when he talks to a frog, then the frog has the hiccups.

Is that your favourite part?

What do you like about the illustrations?
When they were sticking their fingers in their ears and they crossed their eyes and they sticked their tongue out and they put the heads in their legs and hummed Mary had a little lamb. (Laughs. Acts it out. Sings Mary had a little lamb. Silliness ensues.)

Okay, so why should kids read this book?
Cause it’s funny!

If you could ask the author or illustrator a question, what would it be?
How did you make the book?

And why do you think kids should read books?
Cause. Don’t watch TV the whole day.

Thanks Jasper!