I’m always after books for young readers just starting out on chapter books. The ‘TooCool’ and ‘Marcy’ books have been around for a while now and are perennially popular, but some great new titles have just been released.
The ‘TooCool’ books are squarely aimed at young boys, but I know plenty of sport loving girls who enjoy them as much as they enjoy the companion series, ‘Marcy’. The characters in ‘Marcy’ and ‘TooCool’ are the same so if children enjoy one series, they will enjoy seeing the characters in the other.
Children from around 7 years will feel confident reading the ‘TooCool’ and ‘Marcy’ books; the mix of illustrations and text is great. They can also be read by much older children and are often used with students who are experiencing difficulty with reading. The stories never speak down to the reader and they include topics from surfing to soccer to cowboys and waterslides, so they span a wide interest and age range. Lots of humour, action and sport, and some very likeable characters which children will engage with and want to keep reading about.
Phil Kettle has been writing the ‘TooCool’ books for some time now and he has ensured a mix of text types in the different titles in the series – there is some facts, diagrams, Q&A sections and some excellent jokes. Many other small chapter book series are formulaic and poorly written (even some of the wildly popular series, which I shan’t name!). ‘TooCool’ and ‘Marcy’ are not this – this is clever writing – care has been taken with these books.
The author of the ‘TooCool’ series, Phil Kettle, has some great words of encouragement and advice about young boys and reading here.