Friday, April 15, 2011

Book Review of the Month: April

In school, we have a monthly English project that I really like. My teacher, Mrs. Applebaum, makes school a lot of fun. We read one book each month, then we write a book review and make a project about the book (whatever we want, as long as it has to do with the book). We move our desks into a big circle, and go around the circle, each person sharing their review and project. I thought I'd share my book reviews here each month, since I enjoy reading the books and writing about them so much. This month, I read a great book!

Catherine, Called Birdy
By Karen Cushman (review by me- Frankie)

Catherine, Called Birdy is about a spunky fourteen year old Medieval girl. The book is in diary form, so Catherine writes firsthand about her life in her father's manor. She writes about her family, friends, and ideas. But Medieval life isn't always easy. First, Catherine meddles in the lives of her uncle and best friend, which leads to trouble. Then, Catherine's greedy father decides to find her a husband. The richest husband possible. No matter what he looks like or how old he is! After discovering that she can't possibly become a monk, traveling minstrel, or run away and become a puppeteer to escape her fate, Catherine finds ways to repel her would-be husbands with trickery and sass. But unfortunately, the suitor Catherine dislikes the most proves to be not so easy to get rid of.

My thoughts:
Catherine, Called Birdy was a really good book. Karen Cushman is already one of my favorite authors. I liked that Catherine was not an ordinary Medieval girl. She was funny and feisty, but sometimes a "glass half empty" type. I sort of liked that about her though. A girl can't be funny and feisty all the time, can she? I liked reading about her daily life. I also liked reading about Medieval life in general, like the remedies people used to cure people, Medieval manners, religion, hygiene (not for the squeamish), and the holidays and celebrations. Catherine was a very entertaining character. I thought she was very clever.

My rating: 5/5 stars. I wouldn't change much about this book. I loved it!

See more about the book here, on Karen Cushman's website:

So, if you're wondering what I did for my project on the book, I'll tell you all about it. I loved the fancy way the first letter of every chapter in Catherine, Called Birdy was written. The letters were inside of a rectangle, and had really beautiful designs all around them. Inspired, I decided to do something using that design. With a little help from the internet, I discovered that the fancy design was called "illuminated manuscript." So, for my project, I made a journal, by covering a mini composition notebook in grocery bag paper, so it would look old. Then, on the cover, I carefully drew an F for Frankie in my own illuminated manuscript design. In the first few pages of the journal, I wrote some journal entries about my life as if I were in Medieval times. I decorated those pages with illuminated manuscript designs too. I think it turned out well. I had a lot of fun making the project, and now I have a neat journal to remind me of this book!


1 comment:

  1. Hmmmm .. we might have to get that book and read it .. we love stories of midevil times .. it sounds like a cute story ..