Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Harriet's Recital by Nancy Carlson

Harriet's Recital by Nancy Carlson is a quick read intended for beginning readers. The plot is predictable and the book as a whole is a very quick read. Harriet is a girl who is very nervous about her upcoming dance recital. She does not think she will remember the dances and fears embarrassing herself. Would she fall? Will people laugh at her? All of these thoughts go through her mind. However, on the day of the recital Harriet's dance teacher pushes her onto the stage and Harriet must do her best. Luckily, she got over her nerves and was able to dance in the recital. She learned to be unafraid of dancing in public and her first recital was a success.
The language used in this book is fairly simple, and there is a fair amount of repetition. Each page has no more than two sentences, and most of them only have one or are split between two pages. I think that older or more advanced readers would not enjoy this book very much because the text is very simple. The plot needs a little more substance in order to interest most upper level readers. I found myself that this book was very predictable, which is a nice thing for beginning readers.
The illustrations in this book are cartoon like. Harriet is a dog, and so are the other characters. The illustrations are filled with bright colors, but they also lack that "something extra" I have seen in many other books.
I would recommend this book to others if they wanted to find an appropriate book for a beginning or struggling reader. Also, there is a lot of dialogue, so this could be used to help students with the understanding of the concept.

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