- Step into a World of Adventure: The bestselling Magic Tree House series makes history fun by taking you right there, whether it's to France in the Middle Ages, the prairies of America, the moon, or beyond.
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Dinosaurs Before Dark (Magic Tree House, No. 1) (Book & CD) Paperback – May 27, 2008
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From School Library Journal
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
SAL MURDOCCA has illustrated more than 200 children's trade and text books. He is also a librettist for children's opera, a video artist, an avid runner, hiker, and bicyclist, and a teacher of children's illustration at the Parsons School of Design. Sal lives and works in New York with his wife, Nancy.
Top Customer Reviews
I liked this book because they went back in time to explore where was the dinosaur live. Yes I will recommend to other children to read this book to the 3rd graders. I give this story 5 stars. END
After reading this book, we have embarked on a new Magic Tree House adventure a day. My son looks forward to this time so much. Thank goodness the books are at the library! The books can be read by a parent in about a 30 minute sitting. I recorded Dinosaurs Before Dark on tape for my son to listen to any time since it is his favorite of the series so far.
Also to extend the reading activity at home, we created a Cretaceous period dinosaur diorama. My son loves acting out the story with his own dinosaurs...
There is potential in the concept of two children returning to various bygone eras, and experiencing them first hand. The character of Jack, if further developed, could be a good role model for kids interested in science, history, and research. But the character of Annie doesn't work at all. I think she is intended to be a foil for Jack's more serious, contemplative personality, but if she had been portrayed as smarter this would have worked better.
The plots in this series are surprisingly dull. My son halfheartedly suffered through the first read-through of each of the books we bought, but he doesn't want to read them again. We then checked out "Dinosaur Habitat" by Helen V. Griffith from the library, and he asked to read that book at least fifty times.
Osborne underestimates the intelligence of her audience. On occasion, the stories seem to telescope into Annie's eye view, and a lot of ink that could have been devoted to the various interesting aspects of dinosaurs was instead devoted to their relative "niceness".
My most serious objection, however, is the bad grammar. Do not believe the notion that your kids need their sentences cut into pieces in order to read them! Beginning readers pay a lot of attention to structure. A well written, grammatically correct sentence is filled with structural cues which help new readers decipher unfamiliar words. "Dinosaurs Before Dark" contains so many errors, I consider it worse than useless as a teaching aid.
I don't enjoy writing negative reviews, but I want to warn other parents who might be attracted to this series as I was.
* We did enjoy the illustrations by Sal Murdocca, and only wish they had been in color.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I bought this book after a recommendation from a friend for my daughter who will be going into second grade after summer. Read morePublished 25 days ago by snowfire555
My 7-year-old granddaughter reads at about a 3rd grade level. She loved this book. She looks forward to reading more about Jack & Annie's adventures. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Elizabeth Watson