If you can imagine that two people were able to peer into the minds of my kids, pick out everything the kids thought was cool and funny, then squeeze all of it into a book, then you would have a pretty good idea of what The 13-Storey Treehouse is like.
Daft and inventive, author Andy Griffiths and illustrator Terry Denton had Ollie and Toby screaming with laughter as the heroes of the story escaped the clutches of a ravenous sea monster (after accidentally marrying it), battled unexpected monkeys using a giant banana and were rescued from an oversized gorilla by a squadron of flying cats.
The engaging illustrations had the kids dreaming of the lemonade fountains, marshmallow machines and tanks full of pet sharks in the book, and sent them running for a pencil and paper to design their own fantasy tree house.
With an emphasis on illustrations and fairly short stretches of text, this is an ideal book for engaging young readers. It also encourages visual literacy as kids can spend hours poring over the pages of detailed illustrations as well as younger readers using the plentiful simpler illustrations to help them to understand the text.
Ollie’s favourite parts were the detailed illustrations, such as the Treehouse itself, and the picture of the heroes of the story’s previous job as monkey keepers. Toby really enjoyed the silliness and slapstick humour. It doesn’t have a sophisticated plot or characters, but this a perfect book if your kids are looking for a transition between picture books and chapter books with a healthy dose of laugh out loud fun.
We can’t wait to read the other books in the series and find out what happens next.
Notes: we received a free copy of this book in return for an unbiased review for the Lovereading 4 Kids website:
“Reading is fundamental to the development of children and countless research shows the links between good reading skills from an early age and future success in life. However, finding books children want to read or authors that excite them, can be difficult; the choice is daunting and guidance rather thin on the ground. So, Lovereading4kids was created to be the best recommendation site for Children’s Book from toddlers to teens. It has been created using the experience we have as parents and book lovers, who want our children to read great books”.