16 November 2009

Tollins. Explosive Tales for Children

by Conn Iggulden, illustrated by Lizzie Duncan

Harper Collins. Junior, Fantasy, Australian. Hardback rrp $27.99

This book is strong and bold but the stories inside are pure magic for young children aged 5 years to 10 years. And beyond.

I spend a lot of time sitting around waiting for children at different events and my unfortunate five-year-old has to wait with me. Tollins has been the perfect respite from the boredom. This is a book that he tries to read with my help and we look forward to turning over the page to see Lizzy Duncan’s wonderful, bright illustrations. The frustrating part is that my young one wants to get to the end to find out what happens and it takes too long - so sometimes I have to read for her.

Tollins; Explosive Tales for Children is a book of three stories about Tollins, which are a rare species that live at the bottom of our gardens. Or for those who don’t have a garden they probably live in the pot plant that has been forgotten in the corner of the room.

Tollins are often described as fairies but this is not correct. Firstly, fairies only come up to about a Tollins’ knee. Secondly, Tollins are not delicate or fragile. “They are about as fragile as a house brick.” People assume Tollins are like fairies because they have wings and humans normally can’t see these beings, although in Book 1, “How to Blow Up Tollins” humans do find a way to see, capture and use Tollins.

This book will suit the child who loves adventure, a bit of mischief and a dash of danger. Inside its pages are not only wonderful stories, but explorative maps of Tollins country and imaginative drawings of each of the main Tollins characters. There is even more interactive fun for kids at the http://www.savethetollins.com/ website where you get to help Ollie Collins save Tollins’. My daughter has saved 20 Tollins so far! How many can you save? Great fun!

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