While looking for a book to compliment the Early Explorer’s landmarks unit from Little Passports, I stumbled upon this gem. Isabella is a little girl with a big imagination. While her father solicits her help for things from gardening to painting to fixing her fort, Isabella imagines away her duties as she digs in tombs of kings (Pyramids of Giza), builds a wall (the Great wall of China) to protect her people, and so much more. After her eclectic world travels, at the end of the day, Isabella discovers that the most wonderful place is her home.
Isabella: Girl on the Go is a book of imagination. I can see my son so much in Isabella – both in her response to chores and in her incredible imagination. I am a fan of realistic illustrations in children’s books. The artwork in this book isn’t particularly realistic, but it fits the flavor of this book quite well. I find some of the wording a bit awkward. For example, Isabella is referred to as “the girl” and, her father as “the father”, so phrases read like this: “‘Then who will help me tend the garden?’ asked the father.” There are also several puns in the book. This makes reading a lot more enjoyable for parents and older children, but again, some of them are a bit awkward.
As a stand alone book, I would say this one is . . . meh. I would give it three out of five stars. It’s not bad, but I wouldn’t have any reason to get excited about it. However, it is a perfect companion for the first unit in the Early Explorer’s curriculum! It introduces children to four of the five landmark souvenirs that come with the unit and all but one of the landmarks in the book are on the Little Passports wall map! It is a great way to open conversation. Samuel asked questions like, “Why does she paint at the Eiffel tower?”, “What is a mummy?”, or “Why was she a warrior?” It also opened the door for creative play as Samuel promptly stood his post as Lady Liberty. I also really appreciate the section in the back that gives a brief description of all the places mentioned in the book as well as explanations of the characters Isabella pretended to be.
My only true disappointment about this book is that I didn’t have it when Samuel first received his package from Max and Mia at Little Passports.
Bottom line: For the average 3-7 year-old, this is a fun read, but you could take it or leave it. However, for an Early Explorer with Little Passports, this is a MUST HAVE for your library.
*All opinions are my own. I was not compensated in any way for this review, nor was I asked to write it. This post contains no affiliate links*