Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Pip Bartlett's Guide to Magical Creatures by Jackson Pearce and Maggie Stiefvater)

How I Heard About It:  One day during our reading workshop a reader was laughing out loud while she read.  I went over to investigate what was going on.  I assumed she was being distracted by another reader.  Nope!  She was completely engaged with her novel.  It happened to be this book.  She and I talked a bit about it and her comment to me was; "You have to read to this book."  When I found it on "Hoopla" (audio app via my library), I decided to see what was so "funny" about the story.  

What It Is About:  Pip is a unique and creative girl.  She does struggle with communicating with other students, her parents, and the teachers at school.  She doesn't have a problem communicating with "magical creatures".  These creatures include unicorns, griffins, bitterflunks, among other imaginary creatures.  After the unicorn "accident" at school, Pip goes to spend the summer at her Aunt Emma's clinic for magical creatures.  At first it is all fun and games, but then events start going a little haywire.  Soon there is a "gang" of fuzzles that keep multiplying and erupting in flames.  Pip and a new friend Tomas go on a quest to find out how to stop these fuzzles from causing chaos.  They have to work fast because the fuzzles work even faster.    

What I Thought Of It:  I'm always excited to read something that I don't know much about and something that comes recommended by a reader in my class.  The story was a strong audio book and was pretty fun to listen to.  I'm not sure I enjoyed it as much as my fourth grader, but I found it enjoyable to listen to.  Pip was an awesome character and full of such life and imagination.  The "creatures" were out of this world and crazy to read about.  I'm not a huge fan of this type of fantasy, but I kept trying to read/listen through the eyes/ears of a fourth grade reader.  While the plot didn't grab me like realistic fiction does, I can see why young readers would enjoy the story.  

Who Should Read It:  I think this will be a fun new series for readers in grades three, four, and five. Students that enjoy fantasy, imaginary creatures, and wild adventures; surely will devour this book and the ones to come.  Pip Barlett is a strong female protagonist who will be adored by our young female readers.  Happy Reading!  

Rating:  3 STARS out of 5 Stars

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