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Written by Stella Tarakson
Illustrated by Fabiana Anatosio
Part of the Magic Animal Cafe SeriesWrite A Review
With engaging illustrations and quirky talking animals, Magic Animal Cafe is perfect for animal lovers and young readers aged 7+
This is the first story in a series about two children, Ellie and Blake, who can speak to and understand animals due to a magical telephone they find in the empty rooms of a house that the two families have just moved into. This first book introduces the characters, both animal and human, and the adventure starts.
The book is written in chapters and is very visual. It is quite a fast-paced story, with Ellie and her mum’s circumstances described in just a couple of paragraphs. The divorce, the change of town and employment all take second place to the main plot. Ellie’s mother wants to open a café on the ground floor, and obviously mice on the premises is not going to be a positive addition, or part of her plan.
Unlike many other children’s books that have talking animals, these animals are feisty and tough and not the sweet and docile cats and mice that are so often depicted. The idea of a biting mouse and a full-scale riot of protesting mice is quite graphic (and not for the mice haters of this world. In fact, it made me feel quite squeamish!)
It is interesting how the author depicts the mice and the puppy in quite different ways; the mice being intelligent and controlling and the little Labrador puppy Choccy, being just a rather dim youngster.
The main problem in the story is whose house is it and how are the new humans and cats going to co-exist? However, in the closing chapter, a new problem arises, a property developer and his daughter appear on the scene and with the possible redevelopment of their street and the threat of competition to the new cat café across the road, the plot thickens.
The book finishes on a cliff hanger, with Shazza the homesick cockatoo being the next book in the series.
Books that involve animals, especially talking ones is always a winner, and this story, written in a lively and descriptive fashion, will, I am sure, be well received. The layout of the story is clear and inviting with lots of detailed and amusing illustrations. The sentences are well structured with age-appropriate plot and vocabulary. I think this will be a popular read.
About the Magical Animal Cafe series: Join Ellie and Blake as they start new lives in a new town and a mysterious old building. They've only just met, but already they share a magical secret: they can talk to animals! That could prove useful with Ellie's mum opening a cat cafe, but the cafe is under threat from a greedy property developer - unless Ellie and Blake can stop him.
Book 1 in the fun Magical Animal Cafe adventure series!
Ellie and her mum are starting a new life in a new town and a very, very old building. They're opening a cat cafe, but there's a lot to do first - like welcoming the Andersons. Ellie doesn't want to share her home with strangers, especially Blake and his energetic puppy, Choccy. But when Ellie and Blake discover a magical old phone and a mouse determined to get rid of them, they'll have to find a way to all get along together.
|Publication date:||16th September 2021|
|Suitable for:||7+ readers|
|Genres:||Adventure Stories, Animals|
Stella graduated with a law degree, but writing was always her passion. Before long, she left her 'sensible' job and plunged into the world of publishing. She has now written over 30 books. As the daughter of Greek immigrants, Stella was steeped in Greek mythology, and she uses her love of Greece in her books.More About Stella Tarakson
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