Welcome to British Isles Friday! British Isles Friday is a weekly event for sharing all things British and Irish — reviews, photos, opinions, trip reports, guides, links, resources, personal stories, interviews, and research posts. Join us each Friday to link your British and Irish themed content and to see what others have to share. The link list is at the bottom of this post. Pour a cup of tea or lift a pint and join our link party!
Last week, I reviewed two films about sailing warships. Tina shared pictures and descriptions of an English tea room in Florida. Sim reviewed the book The Limehouse Golem by Peter Ackroyd in preparation for the film. Becky reviewed Death of a Cad, second in the Hamish Macbeth mystery series.
Book: Stage Fright on a Summer Night (Magic Tree House #25) by Mary Pope Osborne
Genre: Children’s fiction
Publisher: Random House
Publication date: 2002
Summary: From the Prologue:
Eight-year-old Jack and his seven-year-old sister, Annie, climbed into the tree house. They found that it was filled with books.
Jack and Annie soon discovered that the tree house was magic. It could take them to the places in the books. All they had to do was point to a picture and wish to go there.
In the 25th volume of the Magic Treehouse series, Jack and Annie travel to London on a day that William Shakespeare is desperate for a couple of small actors who can read the roles of the spirits in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. And if that’s not enough adventure, they also cross the old London Bridge with all the buildings on it, meet a dancing bear who is about to be sold as a fighting bear, and encounter a special guest in the Globe Theatre’s audience.
Thoughts: I have a new pen pal. She’s the seven-year-old granddaughter of one of my cousins. I used to write letters to her mother when she was that age. Back then, of course, I wrote letters to my mother and several other people. These days, I hardly write letters to anyone since email has pretty much decimated that pastime. Fortunately, I found some old stationery (my new pen pal’s mother may recognize it!) and the format for letter-writing came back to me like riding a bicycle.
One of the first things my new pen pal told me is that her favorite books are the Magic Treehouse series. In researching that series, I discovered that one had a Shakespeare theme, so I had to check that out. Isn’t that cover cute?
I really enjoyed the story and how the setting of London in 1600 came alive in both words and pictures. I learned some fun things from the short nonfiction appendix — like where the terms “box office” and “role” come from. I also loved that this section includes some of Shakespeare’s most famous quotes.
Appeal: This is meant to be a chapter book for young readers who are just moving from picture books. I think theater lovers of any age will enjoy this quick adventure to Elizabethan England.
Do you write physical letters?