4 out of 4 stars
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Toni the Superhero, written by R.D Base and illustrated by Debbie Hefke, follows the adventures of little Toni as he spends time performing some simple, everyday tasks.
Often, when we read about heroes, they are saving the day in scenarios revolving around the end of the world. They spend their time battling super-villains and rescuing the helpless. Yet, the reality is that many heroes live every day of their lives performing small, everyday things in a great way. This is what Toni does in this book, small, everyday things in a great way.
The target audience of this book can learn a lot, even though its main intention is to help individuals read. The flow of the book is great for a new reader. The simplicity and length of the book prevent reading from becoming a chore.
The sentences are short and simple in structure. While the words used are easy to pronounce and understand. The repetition of certain words is also helpful, as it allows new readers to familiarise themselves with the appearance of those words (the combination of letters), and the resultant sound of such words. This is all for the benefit of first-time readers.
The colourful illustrations contain excellent details, and are certain to attract the attention of children. The cover itself gives a clear indication of what to expect from the story. The illustrations are more or less reflective of the sentences, thus allowing for the ease of understanding. The details of the drawings can be a catalyst for further questions and help expand the reader’s abilities. The superhero costume is one that can create excitement in children. At one point, however, having to turn the page to see the actual drawing of what Toni was doing interrupted the flow of the illustrations.
The tasks Toni performs in the book are tasks that young children generally enjoy doing, or should be learning to perform. This can further engage the children in reading about Toni as they see him in his superhero costume, performing their favourite activities. Additionally, the actual font used in the book is a good size and very visible.
Overall, I rate Toni the Superhero by R.D Base, 4 out of 4 stars. It is a great book for persons who are beginning to read and can serve as a confidence booster for persons who are struggling to read. The cover is great and relays what the book contains. The illustrations inside the book are attention-grabbing. Many kids will enjoy this book and a lot of lessons can be learnt if the book is used to its full potential. I would definitely introduce this book to my niece and nephew when they visit. There are forthcoming books that will look at Toni’s adventures and I think that they will be as good as this one. However, I do hope that the future books do not target the same audience, with the same lessons as this book. Instead, they should gradually help to progress the reading skills, as well as other abilities of the reader.
Toni the Superhero
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