Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Urgency Emergency! Easy reader fun!

If you've read my blog for any length of time, you'll know that I'm not a fan of many beginning readers.  I am constantly frustrated by the lack of consistency in the labeling of beginning readers (the difficulty variation in similarly labeled levels is maddening), and discouraged by the insistence of some adults that children must choose a particularly numbered or labeled book regardless of whether or not it appeals to him.  That's why I so seldom review beginning readers. Of late, however, I do like many of Toon Books' offerings, Holiday House's I Like to Read series, and Eve Bunting's Frog and Friends series).

Now I have another series that makes me happy because it's funny in that dry sort of way in which the Brits are so accomplished - and it's leveled (see below), but not labeled.

Urgency Emergency! Big Bad Wolf
Urgency Emergency! Itsy Bitsy Spider
Dosh Archer, 2013
Albert Whitman & Company

The Urgency Emergency! series follows Doctor Glenda, Nurse Percy, and the patients they see each day in the emergency room.  Patients are the inhabitants of fractured folktales and nursery rhymes that should be familiar to most readers.

In Itsy Bitsy Spider, Itsy has a gash on her head that requires stitches.  How did it happen? We hear the report of a bystander,

"I don't know what happened," cried Miss Muffet. "I was just walking along when I found the spider lying in a puddle of water at the bottom of the waterspout." 
And the patient relates,
"The last thing I remember is a big whoosh of water rushing toward me."

But fear not! Everything turns out fine - even the weather,

Outside the sun had come out and dried up all the rain.

Nurse Percy and Doctor Glenda are the anchor characters of the series, and the straight man and woman in this fun and silly series.

48 pages, brightly-colored illustrations and limited text on each page, many double-spread paintings
Looking for reading levels?  Here they are:

Age Levels: 5-8, Grades: Kindergarten-3

UK version, Bloomsbury
Publishing, 2009

These are new to the US, but apparently at least one was published under a different title in the UK, Choking Wolf (Urgency Emergency).

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