- Age Range: 3 – 12 years
- Grade Level: Kindergarten – 6
- Paperback: 40 pages
Rated it: 4 Stars
I’ve received a free copy from Author Marketing Ideas on behalf of the author in exchange for an honest review.
The Cubs are eager to go on their very first camping trip. It follows the adventure and mishap of friends Darrel and Troy. The anticipation of the entire group was clearly palpable; I recognize the feeling precisely when I recall my first field trip to the big city when I was about ten. It’s like a new layer of the big wide world is being peeled away, a heady sensation and one easy to get carried away with.
For instance, when it comes to listening to the adults who know better when they tell you to not venture from designated safe areas and to not go beyond the specifically marked ones, in red no less. Unfortunately, these two got the message the hard way when they ignored the warnings. They encountered a certain critter by the riverside and to say the least things took a turn for the worse.
I was especially touched by Darrel’s thoughtful gesture to keep Troy warm before he ran off for help. It was informative also for Troy to note that he must stay calm and still to prevent further complications from a particular injury he sustained, and later in on the importance of not startling the critter with a loud noise. It’s excellent for children to know these useful bits of information when interacting with the environment. Then there’s Darrel’s quick thinking, taking the initiative with dealing with the second threat.
After having read this, kids can take away a reasonable set of knowledge from just thirty-four pages. Initially, I thought Nessssss had something to do with Nessie, the Loch Ness Monster because I’ve never heard of another name similar to that before. Also, I loved the names of the older scouts Baloo and Bhageera! I don’t know for certain but I do strongly believe they were inspired by Rudyard Kipling’s characters from The Jungle Book. That was a nice touch, the old influencing the new even in little ways.
The illustrations were simple and lovely, added some clear visuals to the storyline. The only issue I had concerns the beginning, there were redundant sentences in varying degrees that bloated the first chapter. Specifically, multiple lines mentioned their mounting excitement. Perhaps it’s because I’m an adult reading this makes me picky and that it mightn’t bother children in the least but it generally helps keep the story light and clearer with well-tailored paragraphs.
I liked it. I haven’t read a book for such a young age group in a long time, but the author did a good job keeping it simple and lovely with a length that compliments the message of safety and following instructions and most importantly the consequences of not doing just that.