Monday, May 14, 2018

Enjoying Early Readers About Maud the Koala {A Review & Giveaway}

Time for another children's book review and giveaway!!

We were excited to receive these two hardcover books about a young Koala named Maud.

Published by Penguin Workshop, an imprint of Penguin Random House, these books are appropriate for children in 1st through 3rd grade. They are great for reading aloud to children, but are also appropriate for early readers. 

In these stories, young Maud needs to deal with situations that are common for young children: a birthday party and a doctor visit. 

Both my six year old first grader and my eight year old second grader read these books aloud to me during our mommy-time. And my eight year old chose to read it independently as well. There were words they both needed help with, but not very many.  

Let's take a quick look at each book.

Maud the Koala in Fish Are Not Afraid of Doctors is a story about Maud's visit to the doctor for her check up. 

She is nervous about the visit and, after being told that fish don't have to go to the doctor, wishes she was a fish like the ones she sees in the waiting room aquarium. She even tries hiding behind the tank when it is her turn to see the doctor. However, she seems to have calmed down a bit and cooperated well while being examined, until she learns she has to get a "vax-i-nay-shun." 

She tries hiding again, which of course doesn't work, and again wishes she was a fish. She ends up imagining that she is a fish, living in the sea, meeting friends, blowing bubbles, until she is snapped out of her daydream by being told it was time to go and the doctor was all done giving her the shot. 

At the end she learns getting a shot isn't so bad, and she gets to have a sticker. 

Maud the Koala in Much Too Much Birthday is a story about Maud's birthday party. 

The story begins with her mom asking her to help decorate the cupcakes, at which point Maud tells her that there aren't enough for all her friends. To her mom's dismay, she realizes that Maud had invited ALL her friends from various activities and groups, instead of just her friends in her class. 

What Maud didn't realize is that all those friends (56 of them) were going to make the party just a bit chaotic.

Maud ends up going off on her own and finding a friend who was also overwhelmed, though he says it is his stuffed elephant who doesn't like big parties. They spend time together, going back to the party for cupcakes, until the friend had to go home. However, the story ends with a surprise, as she plans for him to come back after the crowd has left, so they can spend time together.

As you can see, there are different ways that the text is shared on the pages. Sometimes it looks as if you are reading a comic with the panels, other times the text is on the page like a "normal" book, and other times there are speech bubbles. The illustrations are bright and cheerful with friendly cartoony characters. They also do a wonderful job telling the story.

I thought it was great that the stories dealt with a couple of common childhood anxieties and showed a way to deal with each. In fact, the back of each book addresses the "caregiver" with some helpful tips.

We loved both of these stories and are hoping they are just the beginning of a series, so we can get to read other books about Maud.

Both Maud the Koala in Fish Are Not Afraid of Doctors and Maud the Koala in Much Too Much Birthday are available for $8.99.

About the Author/Illustrator:

J.E. Morris is an author and illustrator of numerous books for children, including May I Please Have a Cookie? and Please Write Back! featuring Alfie the Alligator, as well as the Steve and Wessley Scholastic Reader series.

I loved discovering that her children helped influence the books. The character Maud is inspired by her daughter, and her son influenced the format of the books, which have the graphic feel of a comic book while allowing younger children to enjoy them.

And now for the great news! One of my readers will get to win their own copies of these 2 Maud the Koala books

Giveaway Time!

All you need to do is enter in the Rafflecopter form below. 
There are only 2 simple mandatory entries, with the remainder of the entries being optional. 
Remember, you do not have to do the extra entries, but they will increase your odds of winning. 

This giveaway is open to US residents 18 and over. 
The giveaway runs May 14th through May 27th!.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I received hardcover copies of Maud the Koala in Much Too Much Birthday and Maud the Koala in Fish Are Not Afraid of Doctors in exchange for my honest review. No further compensation was given. This did not in any way influence my review. I only recommend products I use personally and feel will be a good products for my readers.


  1. If there were more Maud the Koala books, what do you think would be a good topic that kids would relate to?
    Wow. There are so many! Manners, divorce, first day of school, and owning a pet are the one's that come to mind first.

  2. These look like such cute books! The fact that they also provide tips is great, too.

  3. I think a good topic would be going to the Dentist for the first time would be a great Maud the Koala book.

  4. I think explaining bullying would be a good subject.

  5. There are indeed so many issues that could be dealt with. I would have to agree the bullying is a big issue. The first day of school or a new sibling are two more that could be told.

  6. The fist day of school would be a nice ne.

  7. We have never read any books from this series. I will keep my eye out at the library.

  8. Excepting differences in other kids and not bullying.

  9. Dealing with death or divorce would be good topics. Becoming homeless as well.

  10. Sharing and planting vegetables.

  11. Being yourself and confidence would be a good topic.

  12. "If there were more Maud the Koala books, what do you think would be a good topic that kids would relate to?" Koala table manners! Koala art projects! Koalas going to amusement parks!


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