What’s it about?
Poor Simon is always in trouble. If only he could be less clumsy, or more popular, his life would be perfect! But how is a woodworking project going to help him achieve this seemingly impossible goal? It was never even meant to be a box. It was supposed to be a kitchen roll holder. But when Simon Cup goes to the last woodwork lesson of the term, what he makes amazes not only the woodwork teacher, but the whole school. – Goodreads Synopsis
Our Review of Simon Cup’s Box
Miss L’s Review: I liked this book. I have a cousin named Simon so I liked the boy’s name. My favorite part was when Simon’s teacher almost called him a bad word. My other favorite part was when Simon Cup made a box. Simon made a really great box and it was really creative. Simon was really clumsy like my mommy’s daddy is. It was cool how the story ended. I would not like to have a box like the one that Simon made, because the special thing about it sounded kind of weird and wasn’t very nice. I would rate this book 4 stars. Both boys and girls will really like it.
Adult Review: We listened to this as an audio book. It was an interesting experience because our first time through the book, Miss L seemed to pay zero attention to the book. She’d look over at the computer it was playing on occasionally, but then go back to fiddling with various things. At the end of the read-through, I thought I wasn’t even going to be able to get her to sit down and write out any review for it. However, the weirdest thing happened, and she asked to listen to the story again. Considering its just over an hour long, I had no problem letting her do so. She still didn’t seem completely engaged. I think part of the problem is that this is definitely an English story, and as such there’s several terms she just did not understand, such as “Swot” and “Kitchen Roll Holder”. I kept having to pause the book to explain words to her the first time through.
…..and then she asked to listen to it a third time. At that point, I was completely puzzled. To be completely honest, in my opinion, while mildly interesting, this story lacks a multiple-read/listen appeal. While the idea of being put under an outside force’s control (besides parents/teachers) is unusual, and therefore a welcome change, it never really caught my attention. It was one that I’d classify as ‘just okay’, but the fact that the 7-year-old has asked to listen to it three times, and is walking through the house as I write this singing “Simon Cu-up, don’t trip u-up.” means that there’s definitely an appeal to this book that perhaps I, as an adult, just don’t get.
I will say the narrator was fantastic, and at an hour long it really is perfect for a child’s attention span. I have no doubt Miss L will ask to listen to this one more in the future. This is one of those cases when I’m going to completely ignore my feelings on the story, and just go with her rating. Good job from the author and the narrator!
Title: Simon Cup’s Box | Author: A.B. Syed (site) | Narrator: Mark Topping (site)| Publisher: Self-published | Pub. Date: 2016-3-18 | Pages: 142 | Audio length: 65 minutes | Genre: Children’s Fiction | Language: English | Triggers: None | Rating: 4 out of 5 | Date Read: 2016-4-8 | Source: Received a copy from the author free in exchange for an honest review.