3 for the 3-to-5 is where I give brief reviews of three books that I found in the 3-to-5 age range on Amazon. These books are theoretically in the science fiction and horror genres for little kids. (Although obviously for little readers ‘horror’ basically just means including ghosts and ghoulies.)
Space Cowboy & The Journey to Paradisia: Christian, a nine-year old boy, is hurled into Outer Space while sleeping in the Eagle Transporter. In order to return home he must travel to the Planet Paradisia. He also must visit 5 other planets during his space journey, and he meets many foes and friends along the way. On Paradisia he meets up with the Lord of Space, known as Alpha Omega.
Rating: 2 out of 5
Review: Well, this was an interesting one for me just from the get-go because it was apparently meant to be used as a teaching aide in bible camp and whatnot. Each story is supposed to illustrate and/or encourage the kids in some way. I’m not qualified to comment on whether it succeeds as a religious teaching aide.
I liked the idea of the stories. Using space adventure and planets to teach young readers certain lessons is appealingly sneaky. Meeting kids on on their level, teaching them in a way that keeps them interested is a great thing. I would like to see this book handled by someone with a bit more experience writing.
However, I can’t recommend this particular book. The writing was a bit too rough. The formatting was poor when I read it (both on Kindle Cloud Reader and on my Kindle Paperwhite). I think this most of this was due to the pictures’ sizes, however, it definitely had a few spelling and punctuation errors in it as well.
Great idea, poor execution. I would encourage the author to keep trying.
Jib and the Space Junk: Jib loves his job as an alien trash man. He zaps away all the space junk he finds to keep space nice and tidy. But, the cosmos is huge and sometimes he gets lonely. He is excited when he meets a fellow space traveler but communicating isn’t easy when you come from two different planets and have very different outlooks!
Rating: 4 out of 5
Review: Cute illustrations and clear text that’s mostly well-placed combine to create a neat little book. Jib and the Space Junk is about working together and learning to recycle. It’s a great little introduction to the concept of re-using and why we should do it instead of just throwing everything away. It also introduces the idea that not everything can be recycled and those things can be properly disposed of. A great book for three- and four-year-olds.
There’s No Such Thing: A little boy is lost in the woods. A girl rushes to his side, but will he believe her stories of things that go bump in the night or is, ‘there no such thing…?’ A scarily fun tale of a boy trying to find a new way.
Rating: 3 out of 5
Review: I loved the illustrations and the colors of this book, and the rhyming verse is always fun. However, it felt like it was missing a page early on or something. The beginning and end just didn’t really make a whole lot of sense. The middle was great, though, and I liked how the author transformed all the ‘scary’ monsters.
My favorite from this lot was Jib and the Space Junk. It was the most well-put together and had a special charm to it.
As a side note: I’m enjoying doing this 3 for 3-to-5 series a lot more than I thought I would. It’s nice to explore the options out there in the science fiction and horror categories for little readers.