Written by Peter Bently and Illustrated by Ben Court (Pan Macmillan)
The Let’s Read! series are mini versions of much-loved classics. They help the early reader gain confidence and fall in love with stories. They are perfect for the child who has learnt to read and wants to extend themselves beyond the school readers, offering a manageable size as they feel less daunting than a chapter book.
Don’t be fooled however into thinking they are ‘easy’ – the vocabulary is sometimes advanced and you may need to help your child so they don’t feel frustrated, but it’s worth it because the interesting and well-written stories will inspire them to read more books, which is the ultimate aim. While I’m not knocking all school readers, I do wonder sometimes who wrote them and whether they really thought how inspiring they would be to a young child!
Joe, 7, enjoyed The Shark in the Dark which is about a hungry shark, written in rhyming verse:
“Down at the bottom of the deep dark sea
something is stirring and it wants its tea.’
What can the frightened sea creatures do to get away from the shark… read the story to find out.
If you’re not sure which reading level your child is at, do the Macmillan online reading test. After each series of questions you will be advised what level they’re at, and when you get the final result you can link to graded readers in the Let’s Read! series that are suitable for each level.