Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Peter Rabbit books from Kinder Cottage Publishing {Schoolhouse Review}

Everyone that knows me, knows that I love books.  Children's picture books in particular.  Cuddling up with my kids to read a good story with lovely illustrations is just a perfect moment for me.  Recently, I was given two children's books to read and review.  Kinder Cottage Publishing was started in 2012 by husband and wife team, Howard and Ann.  Their goal is to help parents educate their children with a love of literature, history, culture and faith.

The first books that Kinder Cottage published was a series of Peter Rabbit books.  I received Peter Rabbit at the Farm and How Peter Rabbit Went to Sea.  The books were originally published in 1917 by the Henry Altemus Company, but Kinder Cottage has now republished the ten book series in a quality 5''x7'' hardback for a new generation of young readers to enjoy!

Kinder Cottage - Peter Rabbit - Review

Peter Rabbit at the Farm is the second book in the series.  I figured my boys might like it because we live next door to a farm.  Peter starts out doing something he shouldn't be doing, and gets caught up in several mishaps on his walk one day.  It's a cute book for young children who like farm animals and characters who are quick on their feet.  This book actually mentions some adventures that Peter gets into after he makes a boat . . . which is perfect for the next book where we learn about how Peter went to the sea!

How Peter Rabbit went to Sea is book number four in the series.  Again, Peter disobeys.  He goes to the brook against Mother's instructions and finds himself in a troubling series of events.  Along the way we meet Granddaddy Whale, Old Man Shark and Johnny Crab, among other characters.  For little ones who like adventures on the high sea, they might just want to see how Peter manages to get home to Old Mother Rabbit!

Do you see the theme here about Peter, how he was naughty and disobedient, and that got him into trouble?  It is written that his three sisters were good little girls and insinuated that Peter is naughty because he is the boy.  This is a gender stereotype I like to discuss with my own boys, but the lesson of obedience is obvious within the story, without being pushy.

Kinder Cottage - Peter Rabbit - ReviewKinder Cottage - Peter Rabbit - Review

The text of the books are said to be "faithfully updated" and I sometimes hesitate when books are adapted.  Often they get watered down by removing advanced vocabulary, simplifying sentence structure and stripping them of their charm.  This is not the case here.  These books are not twaddle.  Kinder Cottage has been faithful in their adaptions, because it is difficult to tell that these were modified at all.  The original illustrations are included as well; they are quaint and subtle and a nice reprieve from the bright and overbearing illustrations included in many children's books today.

These books are geared towards ages 3-9 years old and I think that's spot on.  The stories are fun and silly, but are still well-written and engaging.  They are smaller books, and would be fine for individual readers, but that does make them a little harder for cuddling up and reading with more than one or two kids, because I'm always shifting the book around to show pictures.  However, the small size does make them ideal for the purse or diaper bag, if you like to take books on the go.  My boys enjoyed the books well enough the first time around, but haven't really asked for them or perused them on their own.  I do enjoy their vintage feel, so I'll keep them on the shelf for younger siblings.

The 10 books in the Peter Rabbit Series include:

Tale of Peter Rabbit
Peter Rabbit at the Farm
Peter Rabbit's Christmas
How Peter Rabbit Went to Sea
Peter Rabbit Goes A-Visiting
Peter Rabbit's Easter
Peter Rabbit's Birthday
When Peter Rabbit Went to School
Peter Rabbit and the Little Boy
Peter Rabbit and Jack the Jumper

Each of the books are sold individually on Kinder Cottage for $4.00, or you can buy the complete set for $30.00.  Right now, if you enter the code TOS at checkout, you can receive 20% off your order!  Kinder Cottage also has a Wizard of Oz series, as well as a new history series coming out, among other titles.

Be sure to read more reviews from the crew to learn about the other titles in the Peter Rabbit series!

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