Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Children's Chapter Book Review: Heidi Heckelbeck Has a Secret

Heidi Heckelbeck Has a Secret

Heidi Heckelbeck Has a Secret
Written by:  Wanda Coven
Illustrated by: Priscilla Burris
Published by: Little Simon, 2012
122 pages

Introducing Heidi Heckelbeck—a brand-new young chapter-book series with witchy whimsy!Now readers between the ages of five and seven can read chapter books tailor-made for a younger level of reading comprehension. Heavily illustrated with large type, Little Simon's young chapter books let young readers feel like they are reading a “grown-up” format with subject, text, and illustrations geared specifically for their own age groups!Heidi Heckelbeck seems like any other eight-year-old, but she has a secret: She’s a witch in disguise. Careful to keep her powers hidden (but excited to use them all the same), Heidi’s learning to live like any other kid—who just happens to be witch. And with easy-to-read language and illustrations on almost every page, Heidi Heckelbeck chapter books are perfect for beginning readers.Heidi and her brother Henry have always been homeschooled—until now. But Heidi is not happy about attending Brewster Elementary, especially not when meanie Melanie Maplethorpe turns Heidi’s first day of school into a nightmare by announcing that Heidi is smelly and ruining her art project. Heidi feels horrible and never wants to go back to school—but while sulking in her room at home, she remembers her special medallion and Book of Spells. With a little bit of carefully concealed magic, Heidi might be able to give Melanie a taste of her own medicine...

* I'm always on the lookout for new books and every now and then I'll check out book publisher websites and look at their coming soon sections.  I think I first heard of this book on the Simon & Schuster website and put it on hold at the library.  I didn't know much about it but it is the first in what is currently a series of 6 (this is the first in the serieswith books scheduled to be published throughout the year, with number 6 due to be released in December).  This book was such a nice surprise.  It's targeted for readers ages 5-7.  While my daughter could definitely read this book on her own I really wanted to read the story too, so we ended up reading it together. Often, I'd bring it out in the morning while we were waiting for the bus and read her a chapter or two.  The print in this book is large and there are illustrations on almost every page.  In this story, 8 year-old Heidi Heckelbeck, the main character starts school for the first time.  There are story lines that kids can relate to - being new at school, making new friends, mean kids, etc.  We don't find out Heidi's secret until the last chapter and it the story leaves you off wanting to read the next one in the series.  We will definitely be checking the series out.  It even has me interested in finding out what's going to happen!

Family Rating: 2 thumbs up!

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