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These books weer a little disappointing. While they cover some basic phonics in a subject matter that my son is interested in, each book only has 6 pages and very few words per page. We worked through them very quickly and my son memorised them after reading them only a couple of times.
My sons (ages 3&5) love these books dearly. The way the words are laid out, on a blank page or at least separate from the illustrations, are appropriate for beginning readers or kids that can only identify letters and some words. The front covers are a bit difficult for a new reader to read as the letters of the title are stylized in the “TMNT font” and there is a lot of extra words on the front. I gave a three star rating because the stories do not always make much sense, a common enough affliction for these phonics books. But my kids have been exposed to enough cohesive narratives and rich characters to be annoyed by the storylines. For example, one story has the turtles being chased by droids in the van, but nothing about how they escape. Here is the text of that page and the next: “They get chased on the way. The van shakes! Oh, no! The cake! (Turn the page) The cake is okay! The turtles are safe.” My kids are never satisfied by this and other similar storylines and I end up making up what happens. In other books in the series the storylines are still simple but make sense all the way through. This could have been done better in all 12 books. Also, the illustrations are clearly reused several times - a small thing, I’m sure to keep the cost down. I’m not even sure my kids care. But I’ve seen better beginning reading series and phonics books that retain some integrity of narrative and put full effort into the illustrations; however, I haven’t yet found one for these particular characters. Overall, sufficient for what I purchased them for. I do appreciate that the narratives are tame and not too scary, important for the age range (preschool through kindergarten or 1st grade) at which the reading level is aimed. I also do not like that the letter a used is represented by a non-standard a, not the one taught in most writing books. My kids know that this a represents the sound the standard a makes, but it is unnecessary at this level and could have been fixed by choosing a different font.