Childrens Picture Books
 

Home

Reviews
General Picture Books
Math
Science
Social Studies
Music & Art
Holidays
Religious
Folk & Fairy Tales
Story Collections
Kid's Books on CD

About Picture Books
Author & Illustrator Info
Picture Book Awards
Picture Book Links

Subjects
Math
Science
Social Studies
Music & Art
Holidays
Religious
Folk & Fairy Tales
Story Collections
Kid's Books on CD

Book Shoppe

ChildrensPictureBook.info Review

Arthur (The Time Soldiers Series, Book 4)
By Kathleen Duey
Illustrator Robert Gould
Publisher Big Guy Books

The Time Soldiers are in for changes in this next installment that takes them back in time to visit King Arthur, that is King Arthur before he is king and has pulled the sword from the stone. When the portal opens this time, Jon again experiences a headache, but this time the pain is excruciating and Mariah and Adam suffer the same problem. The men in dark suits, watching as usual, wonder if this means they aren't really the Originals. The Originals is a term they've used before, but of course we're not yet told what they mean as that's part of the ongoing serialized mystery. Determining that Ron, Mariah, and Adam are too old like in Peter Pan, the kids recruit and train two new members Caitlin and Brian. Caitlin is Mariah's cousin and takes on her role of team historian. Once through the time portal both the men in dark suits and time soldiers are puzzled by the appearance of Arthur and Merlin, They are after all legend not real history. The time soldiers get to watch jousting at a medieval tournament, rescue Arthur from a dungeon, survive various attacks by the evil Sir Edward who want to be king, and face a fire breathing dragon. The dragon's lair just happens to contain one of those glowing stones they'd seen on other adventures in other times. Arthur manages to pull the sword from the stone and as the time soldiers walk back to the time portal with Arthur and Merlin, Merlin refuses to answer their questions telling them they must find out for themselves. The adventure continues in books 5 and 6, Mummy and Samurai. Book 7 Pony Express is coming soon.
Reading Level: 3.4

The Time Soldiers-six kids discover a portal in time and, already prepared for adventure with camouflage fatigues, packs, slingshots, and inflatable rafts, encounter everything from dinosaurs to pirates on their many adventures. The Time Soldier books, a cross between real life photography and digital illustrations, chronicle their missions in time to discover the mysteries of the time portal that appears in the woods near their homes. In each subsequent volume we're given just a bit more evidence that will explain why the time portal exists and why it pops up where and when it does. Throw in the men in dark suits who steal any evidence the kids collect during their time travels, follow them around when they're not adventuring in time, and track them through time with the kids own video camera and you have a near perfect action adventure story for boys. It doesn't hurt that the men in dark suits have green ray guns that save the boys neighborhood from a rampaging Tyrannosaurus Rex.

The Time Soldiers books were written with reluctant readers, boys in particular, in mind. The stories read something like the "let's pretend" adventures that most children play. You get the same kind of succession of complications and the need to employ slingshots and rafts that boys would invent in their own make believe adventures. You also get a jumbling of facts, but fortunately, the token girl, Mariah, is there to point out problems with Triceratops and Apotasaurus living at the same time. She's also in charge of assignments when the kids spend time in the library studying history and survival skills so they'll be ready for their next adventure in time.

The books come in two formats hardcover picture book format for ages 4 and up and digest size paperbacks aimed at 3rd and 4th graders to tailor the packaging to your young reluctant reader. The illustrations are superior in the hardcover editions. If your children aren't prejudiced against "baby" books, I'd recommend those editions especially for readers who rely on the illustrations. Teacher's guides for each of the books are available at the Big Guy Books website. Each of the books is also an Accelerated Reader title in the Renaissance Learning Accelerated Reader program.


Arthur (The Time Soldiers Series, Book 4)

More General Picture Book Reviews

This site was created for the benefit of parents, grandparents, and all those who love to read to children everywhere.
All contents are Copyright © 2005-2007 ChildrensPictureBooks.Info.and EEGPublishing. All Rights Reserved.
Please send comments to the Editor.