At the beginning of summer 2012 we bought three books from the Classic Starts series of classic novels adapted for children. We bought The Adventures of Robin Hood, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, and Oliver Twist. We read Robin Hood, but never took the time to read the other books. I recently had carpal tunnel release surgery on my right hand, my dominant hand, and since I have two children in diapers my husband took a week off of work to help me around the house. We decided to read another one of these books together. My husband read Oliver Twist aloud to our 6 year old son and me. We enjoyed the adventure of the story together.
On Thursday night we decided to go to the Barnes & Noble close to our house, where we bought those three books last year, and buy a few more. We bought White Fang, The Three Musketeers, and Treasure Island. We read White Fang next and finished it just before lunch today. I only knew the story from the Disney movie from my childhood, so I really enjoyed listening to that book also.
The Classic Starts books are abridged to about 144 pages with many short chapters, so they are quick reads. We read through Oliver Twist and White Fang in about two days each. They are designed for young readers to read by themselves starting at around 2nd or 3rd grade. They are meant to be an introduction to a classic novel for children by introducing them to the overarching storyline and plot of each book. The children are exposed to stories from classic novels to pique their interest in reading the full length novel when they are older. They are a great price, $5.95 in store or $6.95 on Barnes & Noble’s website for hardback, so they are great home library builders for families with young readers.
Our son chose Sherlock Holmes for our final adventure before Dad goes back to work on Monday. We are loving this time together sharing a written adventure. The only thing that would make it better would be if the younger children (our 4 year old daughter especially) would be a little more interested in listening to the stories and not so noisy while we’re trying to read.