Sunday, 10 August 2014


Children's book review


When my three boys were little, myths and monsters were always popular story-time material, although it was difficult back then to find a children's book as well presented and beautifully illustrated as Juliet Rix's A-MAZE-ING MINOTAUR which has been selected for The Summer Reading Challenge 2014.

I know they would have loved this book, which as the name suggest retells the story of King Minos' frightening monster and the labyrinth  in fascinating detail. The book works on several levels: a good story, great illustrations by Juliet Snape and the added bonus of a real maze which young readers can trace. They will also love spotting the minotaur hiding in different places on each spread

Although I approached the book from the point of view of a mother of sons - Theseus is as convincing an adventure hero figure as any more contemporary character such as Tin Tin - girls will love this book as well , especially the young princess Ariadne's beautifully drawn gowns and the colourful  palace.
Juliet Rix retells the myth with energy and pace while remaining true to the original story and the book finishes with a short piece containing information about Crete and the Minoan civilisation which puts the myth nicely in context and includes a map. Great for parents who like me were always floundering for answers when the inevitable questions came at the end of the story.
 The book is aimed at five year olds plus, but would be ideal for any primary school child studying The Ancient Greeks or those who just love mazes and monsters.

by Juliet Rix
illustarted by Juliet Snape
Published by Frances Lincoln Children's Books

£11.99 Hardback

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