Monday, May 13, 2013

Tadeo Turtle

Psalm 139: 13-14 tells us how God knit us together, and is quoted at the beginning of Tadeo Turtle, written and illustrated by Janis Cox. Written in rhyming verse, a once contented turtle named Tadeo becomes envious of the way a fellow creature (Sammy Squirrel) is able to move. Hampered by his shell, Tadeo mourns the fact that he can’t climb, run, and jump.

Then one day, Tadeo dreams that he has no shell to hold him back, and he indulges in some classic squirrel maneuvers. He’s happy until a cat comes along and chases him…just as a cat would chase a squirrel. It is only then that he wishes to have his shell back.

When Tadeo wakes up, he acknowledges that he is a turtle, and, as such, God had made him perfectly.

The book ends with four turtle craft ideas and a page devoted to turtle research ideas. The overall structure of the book is no more than four lines of text per page paired with watercolor pictures of various sizes.

What I Like: I like how the author started the book with a Bible verse. Plus, the theme of the book is good: God perfectly and wonderfully made you. I also like the book extensions. Although the crafts aren’t particularly original, they are fun, and the inclusion of them will likely inspire budding artists to create their own turtle. Perhaps they might even use their project to retell the story.

What I Dislike: This isn’t a dislike, but a neutral statement. The illustrations are okay—not my favorite style for a book geared toward younger readers, but still realistic and well done. But to me, many just don’t hold enough detail or variety to keep the attention of a younger audience.

This is also not a dislike, but a note. The research aspect of the book might be too difficult for the target audience. I checked out all the websites listed. One looks to be at about a first or second grade reading level. The text of the other two sites is at about a third or fourth grade level. However, with the guidance of an adult, younger children can enjoy these resources too.

My one true dislike is the price. $12.99 is pricey for a 28 page paperback.

Overall Rating: Good

Age Appeal: No age is listed, but the simplicity of the tale makes it well suited for a Preschool or perhaps Kindergarten audience.

Publisher Info: Word Alive Press, 2012; ISBN: 978-1770696952; Paperback, 28 pgs., $12.99

Buy it Now at for $9.99
OR Buy it at for $12.99
OR Buy the Kindle version for $6.49.

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