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Ms. Frizzle's Adventures: Medieval Castle Hardcover – August 1, 2003
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From School Library Journal
Grade 2-5-One Saturday morning, Ms. Frizzle runs into one of her students, Arnold, at Craig's Castle Shop. They find themselves traveling back to medieval times, checking out life in a castle. The story mixes adventure with humor, fact with fiction. Cartoon illustrations, as usual, are awash with action and scenery. The busy layout includes large-type narration in white rectangles, pale yellow dialogue bubbles, and fact boxes. Kids will appreciate the funny asides, particularly Arnold's thoughts on his teacher-"Not my teacher! It's Saturday!" Although most of the facts can be found elsewhere, the presentation will be a draw for the many Frizzle devotees. Although the book has a larger format than the "Magic School Bus" series (Scholastic), it will attract the same audience. Even the endpapers have a spiffy spin on heraldry, with coats of arms depicting the teacher, her student, and their friends. Bus or no bus, there's no denying the Frizzle magic.
Anne Chapman Callaghan, Racine Public Library, WI
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Gr. 2-5. As in the Ancient Egypt (2001), this amusing, informative, large-format entry in the Ms. Frizzle's Adventures series follows Ms. Frizzle on a time-travel trip into history. She and her student Arnold find themselves in a twelfth-century English castle with barely time for a tour before an invading army attacks. There's plenty of action and comic byplay, but along the way children will learn a good deal about the purpose of castles, their structure, their history, and the social roles of those who lived in and around them. The pictures are brightly colored and the graphic design is reminiscent of comic books, with small panels and speech balloons in addition to narrative text and larger illustrations. Carolyn Phelan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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The book defines a castle, labels the parts of a castle, gives some idea of what castle life was like for those who lived in and around the castle (peasants, craftsmen, servants, nobility), shows how a castle was attacked and defended, and describes a Great Hall feast after the battle.
While I consider the pages to be a bit busy - there is a narrative Ms. Frizzle travel-back-in-time story, there is comic-strip style commentary relevant to the narrative story (which the kids find terribly funny), and there are Q&As at the bottom of the page - the children find it very appealing. They pull this book out to read on their own.