Tuesday 24 August 2021

Book Review: "The Road to Lily Pad Swamp" by MJ Spires

⭐⭐⭐ out of 5

Like with all the books I read and review, this one is gonna start off with the full 5 stars and the hope that they will still be firmly in place by the time I reach the last page.

I'm immediately thinking, without even opening the front cover, that this book has been self-published purely because the reading age is "Baby - 12 years" which covers 4 different age ranges that are the industry standard.  I'm guessing it's a picture book because of having 32 pages, which is the industry standard for picture books.

I've got the Kindle version, so lets open the book up and start reading so that I can review the content of it for you all.

Just opened it and cor lummy is the choice of font and size of the text hard to read!  I can imagine an adult picking the book up in a shop, and giving up after less than a sentence.  That's without even mentioning the front cover being waaaay too mature for such a young audience!  The first star is already teetering on the edge which is unfortunate.

There's no way a child under the age of about 8 would understand "Delicious" or "complimented" so maybe the author is aiming it at closer to the top of the advertised age range but didn't have enough ideas to write any more than 32 pages?  Either way, the first star is coming off already.

I've got a headache and eye strain from having to hold my Kindle so close to my face to be able to read the text.  Apparently it might have been written for newer Kindles (I've got the first generation one) so I'm not knocking the second star off for that, just in case, but I'm in pain and my eyes are sore now, so I'm grateful it's such a short book after all.

This is definitely not suitable for children under 8 years old, purely because of the word choices, but a 12 year old wouldn't read it because it's not mature enough for them, so this should be aimed, I reckon, at 8-10 year olds, rather than birth to 12 and as a very short story rather than a novel.

In 4 paragraphs of literally a sentence or two each, we've gone from Tansy thanking Granny to reading the list, arriving at the swamp and rescuing a dragonfly.  This book has definitely been self or vanity published 'cos there's no way a traditional publisher would put this book on the market.  With a thumping headache, I'm knocking off a second star.

And the book has finished in literally 11 pages, the other 21 are 2 front covers, a page with just the title, a page with the ISBNs, yet another title page, the copyright page with a poorly placed dedication,  images, 11 pages of the story then "support the author",  acknowledgements, about the author then the back cover.  There's almost more about the author and the necessary copyright and stuff, but each page, without fail, has an image after it.

This is obviously the author's first book and she has no idea at all about how to write something for the appropriate age and obviously couldn't be bothered to even begin to research it before she hit the "send" button on her manuscript and got all the butterflies when she had it in her hands for the very first time, which is fair enough, but there's no way that a child would read this book willingly, sorry.

No comments:

Post a Comment