Monday 10 July 2017

Phantasmagorical Phobias

Phantasmagorical Phobias by Michelle Path PB Available on Amazon published by Rowanvale Books RRP $10.57 
ISBN 9781910832189

Reviewed by Karen Hendriks

Australian author Path has creatively written an engaging book with a collection of short stories that delve into fears and how they affect our lives and how the characters manage to overcome them. Path’s clever use of fairy tale, pirate and cowboy and girl characters opens a menagerie of fears that impact greatly upon each character’s ability to function within their world. Imagine a witch who is afraid of toads or a dragon that can’t breath fire.  I like the fact that the book uses short stories so that they can easily be visited and revisited over and over again.  Teachers will find this book a useful resource in their classroom due to the stories having an educational slant.  This book would be suitable for 8-12 year olds.

Path’s style of writing engages young readers with a little old world charm, and a touch of the modern day too.   The stories move along easily with a mix of short and long sentences.  The vocabulary used has a sprinkling of new words that will expand the younger reader (including the title).

‘Chika’s words hurt Jiro. The dragons’s wings drooped and he hung his head. He began to cry. The macaque did not care. He was too intent on his own selfish desires. He ran off into the forest in search of the orchard, leaving Jiro alone with his grief.’

Path is an independent author who is clearly following her passion to write for children with sixteen books published to date and more to come.  She is clearly determined to spread her writing wings.

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