A teacher whose motivation in writing a series of engaging books is to encourage reading to improve kids' learning across the curriculum - including reluctant readers - must be applauded. Mr Mac (the author) tested the book on students in his own class and tweaked it as he was writing it. It has already, therefore, been proven that it is popular with its intended audience and this was also backed up by a teacher at my school who had read it to her class before I received the review copy.
Personally, I struggled with the burps, farts, snot and poop that featured throughout and know that my child-self would have too (I couldn't even read The Twits when I was younger because of the food stuck in Mr Twits' beard!) However, I appreciate fully that it is exactly this humour that will appeal to many readers.
There are thoughtful messages embedded throughout, and children will unwittingly learn secrets to overcome procrastination, along with mindfulness techniques.
As the author is also the illustrator, there is the added bonus that the illustrations reflect the text perfectly and in places, their style reminded me of that of Todd Parr – very definite outlines with minimal detail. At other times, I could imagine a talented child having drawn them. Having these illustrations feature throughout will also please a reluctant reader and their varying sizes and placements will encourage sustained attention.
Had I found the glossary at the back of the book during my reading, I may have struggled a little less during reading. In saying that, children are more accepting of new terminology and can remember it easier than I can.
As this is the second book in the series, children may choose to read the first book before reading this one as they will then be familiar with many of the characters and unique terminology.
Title: The Super Weirdos and the Royal Roodle Rumble
Author/Illustrator: Andrew Macdonald (Mr Mac)
Publisher: Mr Mac’s Books
Publication: May 2022
Ages: 7-12 years
Themes: Humour, mindfulness techniques, teleportation
Do you have any advisory warnings for this book? Do not read if you don’t like to read about burping, farting etc…
Would this book work as a read aloud? Yes
Is there a particular part of the country that it’s set in? No
Reviewer: Nadine Molloy, Library Assistant, Remarkables Primary School, Queenstown, Otago
How are you recommending this book? Recommended
Opening sentence: “Oh no what now? Ah… ahhhh… AHHHH … AAAAAAAAAAAA…CHOO!” Ruby sneezed one of her biggest snottiest sneezes yet.
You can buy this book here