From pirates and picture books, we head to beginning chapter books, thanks to the Adventures in Reading With Kids blog, the Andrew Lost series. The series by J. C. Greenburg (illustrated by Debbie Palen) is about ten year old inventor, Andrew, his thirteen year old cousin Judy and his robot, Thudd.
Andrew’s new invention, the Atom-Sucker goes haywire and shrinks Andrew, Judy and Thudd down to microscopic size and they wind up in the nostrils of the neighbor’s basset hound, Harley. After a little inventive thinking, they get out of Harley’s nose and start to climb to the top of the dog’s head to get a better view. They encounter dust mites that are eating dead skin cells, eyelash mites and since we are “on a dog”, fleas. At the same time as they reach the dog’s head, Harley decides to get into the garbage. His owner, Mrs. Scuttle, discovers him in the garbage and takes him and our miniature friends in the house for a bath. How will Andrew, Judy and Thudd get back to normal size? You will have to read In The Bathroom, In The Kitchen and In the Garden to find out.
Thudd is very smart and gives Andrew and Judy plenty of information so they can figure out how to get back to the Atom Sucker and get back to normal size. But Thudd knows much more and we can read about what he knows in a chapters called “True Stuff” and “Even More True Stuff” at the end of every book. In this book we learn about dog’s amazing sense of smell, what colors dogs can see, the life cycle of fleas and some facts about other insects. Did you know that there are mites who live on fleas?
There are 18 books so far in this series. You can read more about them here.
My grandson, Noah, has read all four books and loves them. They are fun, sometimes gross (a feature, not a bug) and offer lots of good information about the unseen world. My only complaint is the babyish-robot talk of Thudd.