Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Beowulf, as told by Michael Morpugo, illustrated by Michael Foreman

My ten year old doesn't really like books about people. Monsters are his thing. But not just any old troll or dragon, he's pretty specific. A few years ago, when he was just starting to read by himself, we came across the Usbourne Young Reading series in the library, in particular their version of Beowulf. He read this one over and over again and on our next visit we had a look to see what else they had. Pickings were slim, so we ordered these ones online;
My goodness, talk about value for money. He pored over them for months. And so, the search continued. His for for blood curdling fights and many many-headed beasts, mine for well written myths that each built on his reading ability and also might include a few human (or humane!)characters, to try to tempt him into the real world, just for a little while. We had hits and misses. Among the former are D'Aulaires' Book of Norse Myths (an amazing, AMAZING book that deserves its own post) and all the George O'Connor graphic novels.(also pretty fantastic.) 
This Christmas, he requested the Michael Morpugo version of  Beowulf.

I haven't read it myself, Beowulf just isn't my thing. I had to study the story in college and, to put it mildly, old and middle English were not my forte. The doorstop edition of Beowulf that was on my booklist made my shoulders ache and my brain freeze. 
So, the only review I can give the edition above is that after opening it on Christmas morning, he sat on the couch and read it BEFORE trying out his Skylanders Swap Force Starter Pack. 
And there you go. If you have a little reader who is into mythological stuff, this is a good one. 

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