Monday, January 5, 2009

Katie and Kimble: A Ghost Story - Children's Book

Katie & Kimble: A Ghost Story by Linda Thieman

What was this book about?

Katie and her family is moving to a new house. Right off the bat Katie starts to notice things are going strangely. Her dog is doing different things, her baby brother seems to be noticing something. That is when she meets Kimble - the resident ghost.

Kimble is a little girl just like Katie. She really wants to find her mother. Katie is going to help her do this.

Book one of a series.

What did you think about the book?

As this book was for 7 - 10 year olds and I found it interesting and I thought it was great. The main thing that I would at all think about before giving the child is the paranormal twist on the information. Is it ok for the child to believe in ghosts? Would it scare them? Add to that the fact that Linda Thieman doesn't "fake" the ghost part in making it all just a weird twist. She talks about Kimble's death as well as the death of her mother. That could be scary for a child depending on where their thoughts would continue after a story like this.

For me that makes this book the perfect opportunity for parent and child to read something that is entertaining and have a discussion about it afterward to allay any of the child's fears.

So this book is great and I would pick it up for anyone in the designated age range.


Question for You!
Is there a topic totally off the table for your children to read about?


Anonymous said...

Hey, Book Maniac! Thanks for the recommendation. You have really hit upon the main point. I, too, have always felt that Katie & Kimble: A Ghost Story might bring up questions about death and dying, ghosts and God, and so have always thought of it as an opportunity for parents to share their views of these things with their kids.

Many thanks!

Linda Thieman

Unknown said...

Good questions to ask when trying to decide if a book is for a child or not.

Anonymous said...

The fact that Kimble's mom died has never come up in any of the comments from kids or parents (or teachers) who've read Katie & Kimble: A Ghost Story. I suppose that once you get used to Bambi's mom being blown away in the first two minutes of the movie, the story of Kimble's mom seems mild in comparison. What the kids primarily comment on is how much trouble Katie is always getting into and how funny the stories are.

Unknown said...

I first read chapters of Katie and Kimble to see if it would be a good book for my daughter. I found it to be not only totally appropriate for her but that it was a good read for me too! I really appreciate how Thieman weaves ideas that I want to talk to my daughter about but don't always find that right teachable moment to do so. The Dreidel, mom's death, ghosts, friendship and Twinkle all provided my daughter and I themes for talking about what is important in life. And since they were all wrapped around an engaging adventure it was fun too! (My daughter has read more chapters than I, but she keeps me up-to-date with the escapade. Thank you Linda!)

Trish said...

At our house, we thoroughly enjoyed Katie & Kimble: A Ghost Story. I found it to be a delightfully charming story, not scary at all. I can see the benefit that some of you talked about as far as using the book to talk about death and dying with your child. The nice thing about Katie & Kimble: A Ghost Story is that this book's light and happy tone gives it a "Casper the friendly ghost" quality and is great just for pure fun!

Bizaleth said...

My daughter and I read the first book together! We loved it! My daughter kept asking for "just one more chapter" and most of the time she got it because I was as interested as she was! I also read it to my third grade class. The most agreed upon comment with my class was that the author wrote in such a way that they could #1, identify with Katie and #2, they kept having to remind themselves that Kimble was a "ghost." In the summaries that my class wrote, all of them talked about the friendship between Katie and Kimble, which is just what we want to foster in third graders: positive friendships! Katie's big dog and little brother always got a lot of laughs when I read it to the whole class! My daughter is waiting rather impatiently for book number 3!!!! Hurry up Ms. Thieman!

Anonymous said...

Interesting comments from the students, Bizaleth. I had never heard anything like your #2 before--#2, they kept having to remind themselves that Kimble was a "ghost." I wonder if that came from reading the second book in the series, Katie & Kimble: The Magic Wish. In that story, Katie and Kimble find a coupon for a magic wish in a box of Magic Wishes breakfast cereal, but the wish will only last for two days. So Katie and Kimble ultimately decided to wish that Kimble could be human for two days. And she is. She is fully human, and sort of going hog-wild with it. And that is how Mr. Russell, Katie's dad, meets her. He didn't know about her when she was a ghost, and he actually has to keep reminding himself that she is a ghost. Or, rather, whenever Kimble mentions it, Mr. Russell is kind of momentarily taken aback.

Tara said...

As a Mom of 3, I’ve read a lot of books at various reading levels. I was very impressed by the Katie and Kimble series. My kids and I read both “A Ghost Story” and “The Magic Wish”. We loved them both. They have appeal for children under 7, yet enough depth to hold mine and my 14 year old’s interest to the end. They are not just for girls either! My 13 year old son enjoyed them just as well. The fact that they have educational value, nurture family values and instill a sense of social consciousness is an added bonus often lacking in books at this most impressionable reading level. Thanks Ms Thieman for wrapping it all up into such a pleasurable package! We look forward to additional books in this series and will be excited to learn and grow together with Katie and Kimble!