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DANGEROUS PLACES; A HOME SAFETY BOOK (Through the Peephole)

Author: Caroline Hardy

Illustrator: Louise Daykin

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Publisher: Mercury Books, 2006

Material: board book

Summary: There are so many things our young narrator wants to explore. Every room of the house seems to have something that is dangerous: fire and electricity, tools, sewing boxes, cleaning supplies, kitchen stuff, even toys left on the stairs. But thanks to Mom, our young reader can't reach some things, and knows to stay away from others. This is a lift-the-flap book that helps children learn to make safe choices.

Type of Reading: family reading, playtime reading, read aloud book, interactive reading

Recommended Age: read together: 2 to 6; read yourself: 5 to 8

Interest Level: 3 to 6

Age of Child: Started reading with 5-year-old child.

Young Reader Reaction: Our child picked this book because it looked like "fun." The pages moved and there were things hidden behind the flaps. While s/he enjoyed that for a while, we could get very few complete cover-to-cover readings.

Adult Reader Reaction: The story is probably better suited to toddlers and preschoolers. The rhyming text makes it attractive, and the opened flaps give you a full picture of all of the dangerous things mentioned in the text. It would have been nice to go beyond the litany of dangerous things to add a rhyme about staying safe.

Pros: This is a sturdy book that reinforces the things Mom and Dad say about staying safe.

Cons: This is not American English. You'll find Mum, plasters, spanners, and poppers. They are all used in context, so it's easy to answer the "what's that" question ... you just need to know it's there.

Borrow or Buy: Borrow. The rhyming text and illustrations help parents discuss safety in a way that doesn't sound like Mom & Dad talking. Even though it probably says what you say already, somehow a book sounds "smarter" than parents.

If You Liked This Book, Try: MURPHY'S SAFETY SONGS   STRANGER DANGER!   DRAGONS

Educational Themes: What you see is what you get with this book. It offers a room-by-room poem for the dangerous things kids can encounter. It is a perfect starting place for talking about safety and creating safe practices with your kids.

Literary Categories: Fiction - picture book, safety, rhyme

Date(s) Reviewed: June 2007

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