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Katherine

Katherine St. Johns, FL, United States Member Since 2009

I'm the managing editor of the Fantasy Literature blog. Life's too short to read bad books!

HELPFUL VOTES
854
ratings
REVIEWS
338
264
FOLLOWERS
FOLLOWING
374
0
  • "Charming children’s fantasy"

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    Originally posted at Fantasy Literature

    Five Children and It combines eleven stories that Edith Nesbit wrote about five siblings who discovered a wish-granting fairy called The Psammead in the sandlot of the house they recently moved into. The stories were originally serialized in shorter form in Strand Magazine in 1900. The first story (the first chapter of the novel) tells how the children moved from London to Kent, explored their new house and yard, and found the Psammead. He grumpily agrees to grant the children a daily wish that will end at sundown.

    Each chapter tells the story of a single day, how the children wish for something, and how it goes wrong. Usually they wish for something obvious like beauty or money, but sometimes they accidentally wish for something they didn’t really want granted, such as when Cyril carelessly wishes that his baby brother would grow up. The consequences are always unexpected and usually quite awful, and the children have to get themselves out of the situation they got themselves into, often at a cost that leaves them poorer than they were before they made the wish. It’s all rather funny and there are many lessons learned. The take away message is to be careful what you wish for!

    I love Edith Nesbit’s stories — they’re still as humorous and wonderful as they were over 100 years ago. They’re delightfully old-fashioned. For example, the little boys play outside in coats and ties and have to roll down their stockings to show off their bruises. Nesbit is an intrusive narrator, often offering commentary and amusing insights about the characters or their predicaments and sometimes making polite suggestions for the reader’s own behavior. I thought the book was charming and I think it will appeal to any modern reader, child or adult.

    Five Children and It has been adapted into anime, comics, a BBC TV series and movies, and several children’s authors have expanded upon the concept in their own novels. Nesbit also wrote some later stories which included the Psammead.

    Five Children and It is easily found for free online since it’s now in the public domain. I listened to the audio version read by Johanna Ward who is absolutely wonderful. I got this book for $3 by “purchasing” this free Kindle version and then using the Whispersync feature to purchase the audio version. If you do likewise, make sure you’re getting Johanna Ward’s narration. There are others, but I doubt they could be better.

    More

    Five Children and It

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 35 mins)
    • By E. Nesbit
    • Narrated By Johanna Ward
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (7)

    Curious to see if people on the other side of the globe walk upside down, Robert, Anthea, Cyril, Jane, and their baby brother start digging a hole to Australia. They don’t get too far, however, before they dig up a furry brown creature with bat’s ears. It is a Psammead, an ancient sand-fairy. The Sammyadd, as the children call it, grumpily tells them that he is obliged to grant their wishes, because making people’s wishes come true is what Sandfairies do. However, there is one catch: The wishes come undone at sunset.

    Katherine says: "Charming children’s fantasy"
  • "An endearing classic"

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    Another endearing children’s fantasy by a woman who obviously knows what children like. You can’t go wrong with Edith Nesbit and most of her books are in the public domain so you can get the free ebook at Amazon and add the whispersync narration. Great deal.

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    The Enchanted Castle

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 40 mins)
    • By E. Nesbit
    • Narrated By Virginia Leishman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    Jerry, Jimmy, and Kathleen can’t go home for their school holiday because their cousin is sick with measles there. Instead, they stay at Kathleen’s school with the French teacher. One morning, they set out to find adventure. Instead, they find an enchanted place - and magic, too! Walking through a nearby forest, they discover an enormous mansion, where a girl lies asleep in the garden. Although she pretends to be an enchanted princess, she is Mabel, the housekeeper’s niece. But she has a ring that really is magical. It can make the wearer invisible and grant wishes.

    Katherine says: "An endearing classic"
  • "Get this version!"

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    This is one of the best children's stories I've ever read and this particular narration with Jim Dale is stunning. Totally excellent. Highly recommended.

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    Peter Pan

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 16 mins)
    • By J.M. Barrie
    • Narrated By Jim Dale
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (382)
    Performance
    (215)
    Story
    (219)

    Fly away with Peter Pan to the enchanted island of Neverland! This first chapter book adaptation of the classic novel, originally published in 1911, tells the story of the boy who never grows up. And when they join Peter on his magical island, Wendy and her brothers are in for exciting encounters with mermaids, an Indian princess, and pirates! Let the amazing adventures begin!

    H. says: "This may not be the story you think you remember"
  1. Five Children and It
  2. The Enchanted Castle
  3. Peter Pan
  4. .

A Peek at Amazon Customer's Bookshelf

Helpful
Votes
15
 
United States 17 REVIEWS / 18 ratings Member Since 2012 23 Followers / Following 0
 
Amazon Customer's greatest hits:
  • Magic Tree House Collection: Books 1-8

    "Fun!"

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    Story
    What did you love best about Magic Tree House Collection: Books 1-8?

    My 7 year old daughter loved to listen to these while playing lego's or dolls. Much better than having the tv going in the background. She loves the books and has read them and is now enjoying listening to them over and over.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Magic Tree House Collection: Books 1-8?

    The trip to prehistoric times was exciting and entertaining.


    Any additional comments?

    While reading is incredibly important listening and using the imagination is also. This gives the child a different way to use their imagination. Audible books are a great way to encourage development. I also appreciate that Mary Pope Osborne does not use slang. I have found other audible's hard to listen to as they are written in slang or as if a 5-6 year old were speaking. Hearing poor English sets up a pattern for poor speaking in a young mind. I love that this author and this audible did not make me cringe.

  • Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer

    "Enjoyable for adults and children"

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    If you could sum up Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer in three words, what would they be?

    Family Fun


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Theodore Boone: Kid Lawyer?

    When Theodore struggled with fighting in school. He is not a fighter but struggled with the concept of sticking up for right vs wrong. A very real everyday struggle for children and adults.


    Which character – as performed by Richard Thomas – was your favorite?

    The uncle


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. Its a book that my daugther and I listen to together.


    Any additional comments?

    This is a book that can be listened to as a family. The tv is off or in the car the radio is off. Conversation regarding characters and situations in the book follow.

  • Goosebumps HorrorLand, Book 1: Revenge of the Living Dummy

    "Good clean scary fun"

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    What made the experience of listening to Goosebumps HorrorLand, Book 1 the most enjoyable?

    My daughter got really caught up in the story. She was enthralled, a littled scared, a little grosed out and completely entertained.


    What other book might you compare Goosebumps HorrorLand, Book 1 to and why?

    Creep of the deep. But this one had a little extra something in it.


    What about Alissa Hunnicutt’s performance did you like?

    Fun.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    The dummy was pretty frightening in its own way. At one point my daughter commented that she thought the book was too scary yet refused to stop listening. No nightmares as she stuck it out and the adventure was all explained. My daughter was engrosed in the story from the beginning. I think she is a bit young for the series but she was checking them out in the school library hiding and reading them so I allowed it. However if the child is easily frightened or does not understand that the stories are not real - this particular story might be one to wait on.


    Any additional comments?

    I appreciate that she can use her imagination and listen while playing or driving. Saves the parent from the annoying blabbering yellow character and pink friend on tv and creates dialogue. My husband and I enjoyed hearing them also. From an adult perspective they are a scream!

  • The Arctic Incident: Artemis Fowl, Book 2

    "Imaginative"

    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    If you could sum up The Arctic Incident in three words, what would they be?

    Fabulous


    What did you like best about this story?

    My husband and daughter enjoy listening to this story together.


    Have you listened to any of Nathaniel Parker’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Yes. The other Artis Fowl books.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. Its nice to look forward to hearing it.


    Any additional comments?

    Good fun for the family.

What's Trending in Kids:

  • The Giver (






UNABRIDGED) by Lois Lowry Narrated by Ron Rifkin

    The Giver

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 41 mins)
    • By Lois Lowry
    • Narrated By Ron Rifkin
    Overall
    (1368)
    Performance
    (738)
    Story
    (753)

    December is the time of the annual Ceremony at which each twelve-year-old receives a life assignment determined by the Elders. Jonas watches his friend Fiona named Caretaker of the Old and his cheerful pal Asher labeled the Assistant Director of Recreation. But Jonas has been chosen for something special. When his selection leads him to an unnamed man, the man called only the Giver, he begins to sense the dark secrets that underlie the fragile perfection of his world.

    Stephanie says: "Awesome story, suspenseful, lots to think about!"
  • Aladdin and the Enchanted Lamp (






UNABRIDGED) by John Payne (translator) Narrated by Bernard Cetaro Clark

    Aladdin and the Enchanted Lamp

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 45 mins)
    • By John Payne (translator)
    • Narrated By Bernard Cetaro Clark
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    The original story of Aladdin is a Middle-Eastern folk tale. It concerns an impoverished young man named Aladdin. He is recruited by a sorcerer from the Maghreb, who passes himself off as the brother of Aladdin's late father and convinces Aladdin and his mother of his goodness by making arrangements to set up the lad as a wealthy merchant. His real motive is to persuade young Aladdin to retrieve a wonderful oil lamp from a booby-trapped magic cave.

  • If I Stay (






UNABRIDGED) by Gayle Forman Narrated by Kirsten Potter

    If I Stay

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Gayle Forman
    • Narrated By Kirsten Potter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (420)
    Performance
    (210)
    Story
    (209)

    In a single moment, everything changes. Seventeen year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall riding along the snow-wet Oregon road with her family. Then, in a blink, she finds herself watching as her own damaged body is taken from the wreck.

    Heidi P :) says: "Loved the story!"
  • Wonder (






UNABRIDGED) by R. J. Palacio Narrated by Diana Steele, Nick Podehl, Kate Rudd

    Wonder

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By R. J. Palacio
    • Narrated By Diana Steele, Nick Podehl, Kate Rudd
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (673)
    Performance
    (612)
    Story
    (608)

    August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school - until now. He’s about to enter fifth grade at Beecher Prep, and if you’ve ever been the new kid, then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie’s just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, despite appearances?R. J. Palacio has crafted an uplifting novel full of wonderfully realistic family interactions, lively school scenes, and writing that shines with spare emotional power.

    Jay says: "A Beautiful Story"
  •  
  • Rush Revere and the First Patriots: Time-Travel Adventures with Exceptional Americans (






UNABRIDGED) by Rush Limbaugh Narrated by Rush Limbaugh

    Rush Revere and the First Patriots: Time-Travel Adventures with Exceptional Americans

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Rush Limbaugh
    • Narrated By Rush Limbaugh
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (41)
    Performance
    (37)
    Story
    (38)

    Nationally syndicated radio talk-show host Rush Limbaugh has long wanted to make American history come to life for the children of his listeners. In Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims, he created the character of a fearless middle-school history teacher named Rush Revere, who travels back in time and experiences American history as it happens, in adventures with exceptional Americans. In this second book in the series, Rush Revere is transported back to the people and events leading up to the American Revolution.

    Deborah Gunnlaugsson says: "Over the top!"
  • The Lightning Thief: Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book 1 (






UNABRIDGED) by Rick Riordan Narrated by Jesse Bernstein

    The Lightning Thief: Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Rick Riordan
    • Narrated By Jesse Bernstein
    Overall
    (3398)
    Performance
    (1556)
    Story
    (1590)

    Twelve-year-old Percy Jackson is about to be kicked out of boarding school...again. No matter how hard he tries, he can't seem to stay out of trouble. But can he really be expected to stand by and watch while a bully picks on his scrawny best friend? Or not defend himself against his pre-algebra teacher when she turns into a monster and tries to kill him? Of course, no one believes Percy about the monster incident; he's not even sure he believes himself.

    Teddy says: "Fun KIDS Book"
  • Eldest: The Inheritance Cycle, Book 2 (






UNABRIDGED) by Christopher Paolini Narrated by Gerard Doyle

    Eldest: The Inheritance Cycle, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (23 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Christopher Paolini
    • Narrated By Gerard Doyle
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3456)
    Performance
    (1517)
    Story
    (1543)

    Eragon and his dragon, Saphira, have just saved the rebel state from destruction by the mighty forces of King Galbatorix, cruel ruler of the Empire. Now Eragon must travel to Ellesmera, land of the elves, for further training in the skills of the Dragon Rider: magic and swordsmanship. Soon he is on the journey of a lifetime, his eyes open to awe-inspiring new places and people, his days filled with fresh adventure. But chaos and betrayal plague him at every turn, and nothing is what it seems.

    Teddy says: "You see growth in the Author"
  • The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (






UNABRIDGED) by L. Frank Baum Narrated by Anne Hathaway

    The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 52 mins)
    • By L. Frank Baum
    • Narrated By Anne Hathaway
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1729)
    Performance
    (1606)
    Story
    (1599)

    One of the best-known stories in American culture, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz has stirred the imagination of young and old alike for over 100 years. Best Actress nominee Anne Hathaway (Rachel Getting Married, Alice In Wonderland), fresh from filming one of this year’s most anticipated films, The Dark Knight Rises, lends her voice to this uniquely American fairy tale.

    JT says: "Anne Hathaway Shines Throughout This Audio Edition"
  •  
  • A Wrinkle in Time (






UNABRIDGED) by Madeleine L'Engle Narrated by Hope Davis

    A Wrinkle in Time

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Madeleine L'Engle
    • Narrated By Hope Davis
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (399)
    Performance
    (354)
    Story
    (356)

    Meg Murray, her little brother Charles Wallace, and their mother are having a midnight snack on a dark and stormy night when an unearthly stranger appears at their door. He claims to have been blown off course, and goes on to tell them that there is such a thing as a "tesseract," which, if you didn't know, is a wrinkle in time. Meg's father had been experimenting with time-travel when he suddenly disappeared. Will Meg, Charles Wallace, and their friend Calvin outwit the forces of evil as they search through space for their father?

    Patricia says: "Thank You for a New Narrator"
  • The Sea of Monsters: Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book 2 (






UNABRIDGED) by Rick Riordan Narrated by Jesse Bernstein

    The Sea of Monsters: Percy Jackson and the Olympians, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Rick Riordan
    • Narrated By Jesse Bernstein
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2478)
    Performance
    (1238)
    Story
    (1269)

    After a summer spent trying to prevent a catastrophic war among the Greek gods, Percy Jackson finds his seventh-grade school year unnervingly quiet. His biggest problem is dealing with his new friend, Tyson, a six-foot-three, mentally challenged homeless kid who follows Percy everywhere, making it hard for Percy to have any "normal" friends.

    Bridget Westhoven says: "great family fare"
  • The Angel (






UNABRIDGED) by Hans Christian Andersen Narrated by Glenn Hascall

    The Angel

    • UNABRIDGED (5 mins)
    • By Hans Christian Andersen
    • Narrated By Glenn Hascall
    Overall
    (0)
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    (0)
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    (0)

    A touching story of the moments following the death of a child. Comfort, memories, and a visual reminder of life here follows a young boy on his journey. What may be most compelling is his angelic companion. A classic fairy tale from Hans Christian Andersen narrated by Glenn Hascall.

  • Once Upon a Midnight Eerie: The Misadventures of Edgar & Allan Poe, Book 2 (






UNABRIDGED) by Gordon McAlpine Narrated by Arte Johnson

    Once Upon a Midnight Eerie: The Misadventures of Edgar & Allan Poe, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 48 mins)
    • By Gordon McAlpine
    • Narrated By Arte Johnson
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
    Story
    (0)

    In The Tell-Tale Start, Edgar and Allan Poe (great-great-great-great-grandnephews of the legendary Edgar Allan Poe) managed to outwit the nefarious Professor P. Pangborn Perry, who was (and is) determined to kill just one of them, in order to prove a mad scientific theory. Now the boys are in New Orleans, about to play the young Poe in a feature film. But the role may cost them their lives, because now someone else wants them dead. But who? And can the twins - with the help of their co-stars, Em and Milly Dickinson, their ghostly forebear, and a pair of real ghosts - manage to outwit them?

  • The Doll Maker: A Weirdville Book (






UNABRIDGED) by Majanka Verstraete Narrated by Miriam Blum

    The Doll Maker: A Weirdville Book

    • UNABRIDGED (1 hr and 13 mins)
    • By Majanka Verstraete
    • Narrated By Miriam Blum
    Overall
    (0)
    Performance
    (0)
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    (0)

    Derek’s little sister wants one of those creepy-looking dolls staring at him from the strange new doll shop in town, and what his sister wants, she gets. Now they’re stuck with a doll that looks so human, it gives Derek the creeps. When Derek tells his friends, Martin and Jamie, about the new shop with creepy human-like dolls, they want to see for themselves. That has “bad idea” written all over it, but he takes his friends there anyway.

  • Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Flies Again: Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Book 2 (






UNABRIDGED) by Frank Cottrell Boyce Narrated by David Tennant

    Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Flies Again: Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (4 hrs and 31 mins)
    • By Frank Cottrell Boyce
    • Narrated By David Tennant
    Overall
    (0)
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    (0)
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    (0)

    When the Tooting family finds an old engine and fits it to their camper van, they have no idea what kind of adventure lies ahead. The engine used to belong to an extraordinary car, and it wants its bodywork back! But as the Tootings hurtle across the world rebuilding the original Chitty, a sinister baddie is on their trail - one who will stop at nothing to get the magnificent car for himself.

  •  
  • A World Without Princes: The School for Good and Evil, Book 2 (






UNABRIDGED) by Soman Chainani Narrated by Polly Lee

    A World Without Princes: The School for Good and Evil, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (13 hrs and 3 mins)
    • By Soman Chainani
    • Narrated By Polly Lee
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (0)
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    (0)
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    (0)

    In the epic sequel to the New York Times best-selling novel The School for Good and Evil, Sophie and Agatha are home, living out their Ever After. But life isn’t quite the fairy tale they expected. When Agatha secretly wishes she’d chosen a different happy ending, she reopens the gates to the School for Good and Evil. But the world she and Sophie once knew has changed. Witches and princesses, warlocks and princes are no longer enemies. New bonds are forming; old bonds are being shattered.

  • The Hardest Hit: Sam the Hockey Player (






UNABRIDGED) by Frank Scalise Narrated by Darren Meekin

    The Hardest Hit: Sam the Hockey Player

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs)
    • By Frank Scalise
    • Narrated By Darren Meekin
    Overall
    (0)
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    (0)
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    Eleven-year-old Sam Parker is a hockey player entering the first year in which body checking is allowed. His natural fear of getting hit is temporarily overshadowed by finding out his parents are getting divorced. Determined to keep them together by being a hockey superstar, Sam instead suffers a bone-crunching check from the school bully in his first game of the season. The resulting pain and fear brings out the worst in Sam as one difficulty after another piles on.

  • The Last Unicorns (






UNABRIDGED) by Edward D. Hoch Narrated by Glenn Hascall

    The Last Unicorns

    • UNABRIDGED (4 mins)
    • By Edward D. Hoch
    • Narrated By Glenn Hascall
    Overall
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    A pair of unicorns has been spotted and one young man is intent on buying them from the old man. The pair were purchased in Africa and brought to the region as beasts of burden and for breeding purposes. Will the young man be successful - or turned away? An interesting fictional twist on a familiar tale. Narrated by Glenn Hascall.

  • Welcome to Dog Beach: The Seagate Summers, Book 1 (






UNABRIDGED) by Lisa Greenwald Narrated by Kate Reinders

    Welcome to Dog Beach: The Seagate Summers, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Lisa Greenwald
    • Narrated By Kate Reinders
    Overall
    (0)
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    Eleven-year-old Remy loves Seagate, the island where her grandmother had a house and where her family spends every summer vacation. But this year’s different. Remy misses her dog, Danish, who recently passed away. The usual Seagate traditions don’t feel the same - and neither does her relationship with her two best friends, Micayla and Bennett. Micayla’s family is moving to Seagate year-round, and she’s spending more time with the year-round kids.

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  • Frank and Tank: Foggy Rescue (






UNABRIDGED) by Sharon Phillips Denslow Narrated by Oliver Wyman

    Frank and Tank: Foggy Rescue

    • UNABRIDGED (7 mins)
    • By Sharon Phillips Denslow
    • Narrated By Oliver Wyman
    Overall
    (0)
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    Frank and Tank are captain and first mate of the tugboat the Stinky Sue. Their exciting adventures at sea are told through simple, declarative sentences with an emphasis on phonics. A very funny Level 1 ICR series about friendship, boats, and community, this is a perfect choice for newly independent listeners ready for a very short story with an exciting plot. Fog rolls in suddenly, and now Captain Frank (an otter) and First Mate Tank (a hippo), onboard their sturdy tug, the Stinky Sue, are lost at sea.

  • The Bronze Ring (






UNABRIDGED) by Andrew Lang Narrated by Linda Velwest

    The Bronze Ring

    • UNABRIDGED (27 mins)
    • By Andrew Lang
    • Narrated By Linda Velwest
    Overall
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    The son of the Gardener to the King and the King's daughter fall in love. The King wants his daughter to marry the Prime Minister's son. So the two young men have to enter a contest: Whoever travels to a distant land and comes back first, wins the hand of the Princess.