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57 Reviews
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38 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent New Addition to the Series or Standalone Children's Book
I have read many of the Magic Treehouse books while recently "studying" for my 6-year old's Magic Treehouse Birthday Party. She really loves this series, reads them ravenously, and plays "Jack and Annie" constantly with her friends. I read around 15 of them, up until now the first part of the series (this is my first of the Merlin Missions), and have found the books to...
Published on October 20, 2008 by Nicki Heskin

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3.0 out of 5 stars Eve of the emperor penguin
It is a good book I just love how it has a very strong message that can be important to kids.
Published 19 months ago by mrclean


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38 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent New Addition to the Series or Standalone Children's Book, October 20, 2008
I have read many of the Magic Treehouse books while recently "studying" for my 6-year old's Magic Treehouse Birthday Party. She really loves this series, reads them ravenously, and plays "Jack and Annie" constantly with her friends. I read around 15 of them, up until now the first part of the series (this is my first of the Merlin Missions), and have found the books to be cute, quick and entertaining.

I have never found anything in them that concerns me for my daughter to be reading, which is more than I can say for many of the series out there for young children, whose main characters are often wisecracking, sibling-hating and constantly in trouble. I love the way Jack and Annie play together and protect one another, even while they don't always agree and have different styles and strengths.

In any case, regarding this specific book, I think it is a wonderful addition to the Magic Tree House Series, or if you child is new to the series, an excellent introduction. My daughter just got it for her birthday.. and I gave it a quick read because now that I've read so many, I wanted to see what the Merlin Missions were all about.

I was quite impressed. This book seemed a little bit more developed and engrossing than some of the early stories. Not in a way that is too difficult for kids, but just more substantial. It was a good mix of fantasy and fact, like usual, with easily digestible facts and lessons, in this case on penguins and the Antarctic. This book was doubly interesting in that it was a culmination of a 4-book set (the magic treehouse books have 4 book sets that circle around a particular theme or type of mission -- in this one they are trying to find 4 secrets of happiness for Merlin who is exceedingly sad and have been asked by Morgan le Fay, the owner of the treehouse, to help). The secrets they share -- nature, curiosity, compassion and taking care of others -- provide just lovely messages for kids.

There are a few scary parts, when they fall down a cliff, or when a predatory bird is attacking a penguin, but Osborne has a gift for having adventure in her stories without the "scary" aspect being too much for kids. My daughter will hardly watch anything these days because of mean or scary characters, and that extends to some books -- but these stories always engage her without frightening her.

If your kids already like the Magic Tree House series, definitely add this one to their collection. If MTH is new for your children, this is a great one to start with. It stands alone nicely (she has a short prologue which explains things well up to this point), and may get your child interested in reading the earlier books. What's so great about Magic Tree House is that it is wonderful for boys and for girls. And it really creates a gentle exposure to history and character often natural science, but in a fun way. And for those kids that love the topic of the book, there are non-fiction research guides, very easily accessible for 5-6 years and up with lots more information on those topic (for this book, the companion research guide is Penguins and Antarctica (Magic Tree House Rsrch Gdes(R)).

This book makes a wonderful gift for any early to mid-level reader. If your child is an early reader, it would be great to read with them. For a mid-level reader, they can spread it out a chapter at a time, or like my daughter, tear through it in an afternoon. Great job, Mary Pope Osborne. Please keep them coming!!!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Blends magic and science in another satisfying Magic Treehouse saga, December 13, 2008
#40 in the Magic Treehouse 'Merlin Mission' series provides a rhyme immersing Jack and Annie in a mission to find the fourth secret of happiness for Merlin the magician. The magic tree house here takes them to Antarctica, where they meet scientists and reporters in modern times. How can they search for ancient artifacts in a modern setting? A delightful fantasy blends magic and science in another satisfying Magic Treehouse saga.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun Adventure!, September 19, 2011
By 
This book, Eve of the Emperor Penguin is the third book in the Magic Tree House series my son has read. It was his favorite out of the three because it had more adventure in it. There was one nerve-wracking scene in it that he felt really built the suspense and made you worry for Jack and Annie. He adored the descriptions of the penguins, and especially liked reading about Penny.

This book combines all the fantastic elements of the Magic Tree House books: friendship, being brave, learning to follow instructions, how reading is important, and being kind to animals.

Easy and fun to read, Eve of the Emperor Penguin is a great, plotty addition to the Magic Tree House series.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Stories for Children Magazine 5 Star Review, December 5, 2008
REVIEWED BY: Wayne S. Walker (BN)

The "Magic Tree House" book #40 is now out. Jack and Annie of Frog Creek, PA, are taken by Morgan Le Fay's magic tree house to Antarctica to find the fourth secret of happiness and help Merlin get better. They encounter lots of snow, an angry petrel trying to attack a young penguin, researchers at McMurdo Station, the volcanic activity of Mt. Erebus, dangerous crevasses in the ice, and, of course, penguins. But will they locate the secret and be able to return to Camelot in time to save Merlin? The book offers a great basis for studying the history and geography of Antarctica and also for learning more about penguins.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great for students! Bad if you hate penguins., February 12, 2009
A Kid's Review
I thought the book is really cool. It's really fascinating because people might learn about penguins when they're reading this book, especially if you read the research book about the penguins. I think that you should read a lot of the Magic Tree House books because they're really helpful; so are the research books. I think that Mary Pope Osborne did a really good job at writing her books. Some people tell me that some of her books are horrible but I disagree because for instance I like this book and so should you.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Read, May 21, 2010
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This review is from: Eve of the Emperor Penguin (Magic Tree House #40) (Paperback)
The Magic Tree House Series is wonderful. My 10 yr old daughter had been reading the series since she was 8. It appeals to both boys & girls. It also stresses cooperation & a bond between siblings. Not only is it fun but the author does an amazing job teaching kids about everything from history to animal species. Whenever a new book is coming out she insists on pre-ordering it so she can get it immediately!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Chilling Story in The South Pole, April 27, 2009
A Kid's Review
Another exciting, fun filled story of Jack and Annie, this time in the South Pole searching for the secret of happiness. The story told a lot about the continent of Antarctica, volcanoes, and interesting facts about penguins. Jack and Annie have fun following travelers throughout the cold continent. I would definitely recommend this book to readers who like adventure and the Magic Tree House series.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great on the Kindle, April 12, 2010
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I purchased the Kindle edition and it works great on my Kindle2. The images and features from the book are all there in the kindle edition.

The Magic Treehouse series of books keep my six-year old entertained. I don't enjoy them as much as he does, but that's not the point. He enjoyed the kindle version as much as the other books he has read in the series.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Love it, July 9, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I had to read it because my mom told me to. But I did like is with the cute animal
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, July 9, 2014
This review is from: Eve of the Emperor Penguin (Magic Tree House #40) (Paperback)
Daughter loves these books!
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Eve of the Emperor Penguin (Magic Tree House #40)
Eve of the Emperor Penguin (Magic Tree House #40) by Mary Pope Osborne (Paperback - December 8, 2009)
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