Thursday, June 18, 2020

Review - The Ninjabread Man

The Ninjabread Man (Tadpoles Fairytale Twists)
by Katrina Charman
illustrated by Fabiano Florin
Date: 2016
Publisher: Crabtree Publishing Company
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 32
Format: e-book
Source: library

In a terrific twist on the original tale of The Gingerbread Man, follow the amazing Ninjabread Man as he dips and dives out of danger!

(synopsis from Goodreads)

Talk about an overdone trope. Goodreads lists six picture books about this Ninjabread Man. It might have been clever the first time, but... is "ninja" really the only word that sort of rhymes with "ginger"?

I read another book called The Ninjabread Man back in January of this year (2020). It was just as stupid as this one. While this particular version, put out in the Tadpoles Fairytale Twists series, isn't quite as grating as the one from the Twisted Fairy Tales series, it still has its issues. The grammar is better, to be sure, but the story is weak and ends in unsatisfying silliness.

I was also put off by the reading recommendations at the end. Making the kid look at all the pictures first and try to figure out what happens before they're actually allowed to read the book? Are spoilers the new trend in teaching children how to read? (If I'd already figured out the story from being told to look at the pictures beforehand, I wouldn't have had much incentive to actually read the book.)

Overall, this is a lacklustre effort. Authors need to cool it with the "ninjabread" men. The concept was stupid the first time.

Premise: 2/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 2/5
Illustrations: 3/5
Originality: 2/5

Enjoyment: 1/5

Overall: 1.83 out of 5

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