September 26, 2016

Emma and the Blue Genie by Cornellia Funke

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , at 3:43 am by suebe2

emmaEmma and the Blue Genie
by Cornellia Funke
illustrated by Kerstin Meyer
Random House

Emma loved the ocean.  More than anything, she liked to sit in the dark on the beach and listen to the waves.  She had to sit on the beach because one of her four pesky brothers would usually crawl into bed with her.  Whichever one it was, his snores were usually enough to drown out the surf.

One night, Emma was on the beach when she spotted a glowing bottle.  When she opens it, out rolls a blue smoke that resolves into a genie scarcely bigger than Emma herself.  Karim is so small, and has so little power, because a yellow genie has stolen his nose ring.  He can’t even grant Emma three wishes.

Before long Emma and her noodle-tailed dog Tristan are off to take Karim home to Barakash. Once there, they are captured by the yellow genie who is stripping the city of everything of value. He carries them to his ruin of a palace, half-buried in hot desert sand.  It doesn’t take Emma long to realize that life in a golden cage isn’t much of a life at all. Fortunately, her new friend is determined to rescue her and get his nose ring back.

At only 90 pages this is a super quick read whether you consider it a chapter book or young middle grade.  It is a light-hearted fast-moving story full of Funke’s wacky trademark wit.

I loved the colors and details in Meyer’s paintings.  Her artwork reflected the descriptions in the text much more than did the cover art.

This would not be an incredibly easy book to read.  The names alone (Karim, Barakash, or Maimun) would make it a little tricky.  But the art work breaks up the text and the book as a whole is short enough to appeal to a reader who has skill but lacks confidence.  This would also make an excellent choice for a cozy, family read-aloud.

Share the magic with your young reader today.

–SueBE

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