Monday, January 7, 2013

Review - The Lump of Coal

The Lump Of Coal
by Lemony Snicket
illustrated by Brett Helquist
Date: 2008
Publisher: HarperCollins
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 34
Format: hardcover
Source: library

This is a story about a lump of coal who can think, talk, and move itself around.

Is there a more charming holiday tale to behold? Probably, but Lemony Snicket has not written one.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

I'm not a huge Lemony Snicket fan.  I tried reading A Series of Unfortunate Events but couldn't get into it (I never even finished the first book).  The movie based on those books bored me.  So I didn't have super-high expectations when a family member brought this little book home from the library.

It's a cute message wrapped in a well-written little story... but the fun part of this book is really the illustrations.  There's just something amusing about a grumpy little piece of coal who sets off to find fulfillment as an artist (leaving little black footprints everywhere as he goes).

It's short, and you can probably get through it in a couple of minutes.  However, I can see this as a holiday favourite that kids might enjoy hearing read aloud.

Premise: 4/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 5/5
Illustrations: 5/5
Originality: 5/5
Enjoyment: 3/5

Overall: 4.4 out of 5

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