Oh no! How can that be?
Granny's cow PLOPPY is stuck up a tree.
With a loud TOOT-TOOT and a HIP-HOORAY,
look who's coming to save the day ...
"NEE NAW! NEE NAW!
I'm a little fire engine.
NEE NAW! NEE NAW!
I'm happy I'm me!"
With an easy-to-sing melody and a catchy refrain, and brilliantly illustrated with the quirky art of Paul Beavis. Also included is a CD so the young reader can sing along with the story.
I choose to review Nee Naw and the Cowtastrophe because the cover looks really appealing and my son loves both cows and fire engines. On the cover are fun and inviting illustrations. And throughout the whole book, the illustrations are so clever, funny and engaging.
My three children and I sat down to read Nee Naw and the Cowtastrophe. It was very fun and easy to read. We all enjoyed the story and the children wanted to read the book again. Then they found the CD at the back of the book. On the CD is the story been sung, it is very catchy and easy to listen too. We have to listen to the CD every day on the way to school. My 4-year-old son can now read most of the Nee Naw book as he has learnt it from the CD.
The story is about a small fire engine who gets left behind at the fire station by the big engine as Nee Naw is too small for the job. Then granny phones up for help as her cow Ploppy is stuck up a tree. So Nee Naw has to be the one to go save Ploppy. Nee Naw saves the day and gets Ploppy down from the tree. I love the story the book tells that you don't have to be the biggest and bravest as long as you give it your best go.
The book retails for $18.99 which I think is good value for money, especially with the added bonus of the CD. Nee Naw suits children age 3 to 7 in my opinion and will be loved by all who read it. Looks like this is the 2nd book in the series, so I'm going to purchase my children the original book in the series Nee Naw the Little Fire Engine for Christmas.
I love it when kids reach that next milestone and surprise you with a new skill. In Miss Six' case it was realising how double meanings can be the funniest thing ever! Because she is reading so well now, I suggested that she read this book to me rather than the other way round - but we got no further than the cover as she collapsed in giggles at the idea of Ploppy the Cow experiencing a "cowtastrophe" instead of a "catastrophe". She got it straight away; it was so exciting to visualise that little light bulb flicking`````` on above her head as she worked it out.
Having got over that little reaction, we proceeded to the story proper, me listening (and helping out a couple of times with unfamiliar words) and her reading to me. But first, of course, she had to fill in her name on the first page. Kids love getting books where they are invited to personalise their copy. I wish more books included this feature! After that, we read more or less from start to finish although there were frequent pauses to talk about the pictures. Both of us loved the way Nee Naw woke up, and laughed at the fire crew being tipped out of their ladder beds! We also loved the way that the cat and the cow added their personal sounds at the end of the book when they paraphrased "I'm happy I'm me!"
One thing that annoyed us was the way the picture of Ploppy getting down from the tree was spread over two pages. Part of the picture was lost in the fold of the book, but we would like to have seen it all. We thought it would have been better to put most of the picture on one page of the double spread and make the whole thing smaller. The pictures are so beautifully drawn that it seems a shame that one is partially hidden.
However, we did like the message that the story conveys. Nee Naw learns to trust in himself and be content with his size - a really important lesson for children in confidence and self-acceptance. Miss Six was quite annoyed when the bigger engines were bullying him, so was relieved when he too is wanted for a rescue mission and regains his self-esteem. She was even happier when, in turn, he teaches this lesson to Ploppy who is able to overcome her fears and get herself out of a difficult situation.
Finally, there is a CD included so the young reader can sing along while looking at the words in the book. Not only is this great fun, it also reinforces the new words as the lyrics are faithful to the written text. Miss Six has read and listened to the book at least a dozen times since first encountering it, and now that she knows the story and melody by heart, she is busy choreographing a little dance to go with it!
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