Official Review: Friends

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bookowlie
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Official Review: Friends

Post by bookowlie » 17 Jan 2018, 12:30

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Friends" by Bonita Treasure Murungi Arinaitwe.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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Friends is an illustrated children’s book written by Bonita Treasure Murungi Arinaitwe. Princess Noella is a girl who lives in the Kingdom of Laminar. She meets a girl named Misty and they become close friends. When they are taken by robbers during a sleepover at the palace, the girls discover a secret – they are actually sisters, as Misty had been kidnapped as a baby and raised by another family.

I became very interested in reading this book after finding out it was written by a ten-year-old girl from Uganda. It is an impressive accomplishment for a child of that age to write such a heartwarming story that explores the universal themes of family, friendship, bullying, and love. The plot begins with Princess Noella and Misty as young girls and follows along as they mature. There are time jumps between some of the chapters, but this doesn’t feel awkward as each chapter focuses on a specific topic and period in their lives.

The artwork is beautiful and has a handcrafted look. However, it’s not clear if the author also did the illustrations as only the cover art is attributed to another person, Kato Richard. The depiction of the girls’ faces is not always consistent, even within the same chapter. Still, the pictures are a fun, colorful complement to the narrative and give good visual clues. This is important for children who are beginning to read independently.

There are two aspects of this book that I really appreciated. First, there is a glossary of words that might be advanced for children. These words are highlighted in red throughout the story so that children can easily look up the meaning in the glossary. This is a useful tool for kids to expand their vocabulary and have the definitions right at their fingertips. Another bonus is a list of questions for the reader to remember specific plot points and characters, as well as a fun drawing activity.

Unfortunately, I spotted approximately fifteen grammatical errors throughout the story. These errors include missing commas before or after dialogue, incorrect apostrophes, no space between words, and one instance of incorrect word usage. In addition, there is repetition within the paragraph about Misty’s mother allowing her to visit the palace. After stating that Misty’s mother allowed Misty to go visit Princess Noella in the palace, the next sentence says that Misty’s mother agreed.

I give this book a rating of 3 out of 4 stars. It is an entertaining and educational read that is suitable for children ages 8-12. I look forward to reading other books by this young, talented author.

******
Friends
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Post by Kat Berg » 18 Jan 2018, 23:44

I love to read books written by young people, even if they are not as polished as I would normally prefer. I was such a chicken at that age, I cannot imagine having the temerity to write AND PUBLISH my own book! :) Thanks for the review.

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Post by gali » 18 Jan 2018, 23:57

The book was written by a ten-year-old girl from Uganda?? Impressive indeed. Sounds like a cute book with positive messages. And the glossary of words and the fun activity are an added bonus indeed. Too bad about the errors, though. Great review!
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Post by bookowlie » 19 Jan 2018, 00:05

Thanks for taking the time to read my review! Kat Berg - I also love when children write their own stories. I was very impressed by this book, despite the errors.
"I am not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship" - Louisa May Alcott

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Post by bookowlie » 19 Jan 2018, 00:09

Gali - Thanks for the kind words. I really liked the glossary and the way the advanced words were highlighted in red, so that kids would know to look up the words in the glossary. This is a great way for kids to improve their vocabulary.
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Post by Sahani Nimandra » 19 Jan 2018, 03:47

Wow impressive! The first time I developed reading as a lovable habit, when I was 12 years, and that was Harry potter. My best friend introduce me to the world of books and imagination so that I could escape my troubled reality and depression. A kid writing her book at age 10 is amazing, we cannot expect polish work but kids like that are always worth encouraging. If she continues this she will be a true proficient when she grows up. Great work! Thanks for the review!
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Post by kandscreeley » 19 Jan 2018, 08:16

I love seeing books written by children! It's great to encourage their creativity at such a young age. This one sounds fun with just a bit of proofreading. Thanks for the introduction.
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Post by MsTri » 19 Jan 2018, 21:57

Even though this sounds like a good read, I'll get it with the secondary goal of supporting its young author. I too was writing stories at her age, but there was no Internet or self-publishing back then, so I'm glad to see someone taking advantage of the technology now available. I also admire her creativity in having highlighted words and a glossary, to boot. Like others have said, I'm totally willing to overlook the errors, though I would still encourage the writer to have it edited next time, if only by a teacher or someone.

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Post by kateayuban04 » 20 Jan 2018, 00:44

Wow a young children wrote this story I'm so impressed 👏

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Post by Miriam Molina » 20 Jan 2018, 19:35

This is one of the wonders of today's technology: even kids can self-publish! I am amazed at this young girl's talent and confidence. She lives up to her name, "Treasure."

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Post by Al Chakauya » 23 Jan 2018, 06:28

A 10 year old self publishing a book- what a rare feat!. I love the book already. A children's book by a child sounds a great read. Generally I am not a fan of children's books but because this one was authored by a child, I will definitely have to read it.

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Post by Kaveesh » 24 Jan 2018, 00:54

Usually read mostly books made for adult people but this one was kind of a good book to read because firstly it was authored by a child, which makes it more interesting as they can also narrate and that the story was good.

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Post by Achus52 » 02 Feb 2018, 13:33

I always used to love books on friendship . And that too written by a 10-year old girl. Interesting.

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Post by BM_2018 » 05 Feb 2018, 00:05

Incredible talent for that age. My first attempt at writing was at the age of twelve but I never came close to that feat.

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Post by mercymwas97 » 06 Feb 2018, 10:40

Interesting...... I would say this Just awesome.....love this

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