By Author / Illustrator
Tamara Macfarlane, Michael Fowkes
Hachette Children's Group
Esme is seriously bored of all the work and practice her mother keeps insisting she does in order to perfect her circus performance. So when an idea forms in Esme's head of adding some fun animals to her performance, she knows just who to call ...her cousins at Maclinkey Castle who have all manner of odd pets. With little rehearsal Esme and her act perform on the high wire. But disaster strikes and her co-stars tumble to the ground. Donk won't wake up and now everyone in town thinks that Circus Miranda is cruel to animals. What can Esme do to stop the crowds from leaving the circus? The answer lies in her punishment of being made to run the lowly sweet treats stand and being banned from performing. With a little bit of maple syrup, chocolate, caramel and a dash of teamwork, surely the kids can tempt the crowds back...?
I put this book in my special reading box for the children when they have the time to do some independent reading in my Year 3 class. I found that the boys were very against picking up a book that was so 'pink' and 'girly', however the young girls in my class enjoyed following the adventures of Esme and could relate to how bored she was at the circus, doing the same thing day in, day out - like school (apparently). However I wouldn't necessarily suggest having this as the class story, I think it is more enjoyable for the children to read it themselves. It also helped that this book came through the post when we were being visited by a man who taught circus tricks. So the girls that did enjoy the story were able to relate to the book as they had learnt some tricks themselves! Personally I found the book a slightly dull to read without the mind of a child, but the girls I had asked said they had enjoyed it!
Suggested Reading Age 7+