Reviewed by Bruce Arrington for Readers' Favorite
The Ansgar Kids Treasury: A Windflower Saga Collection, written by Aleksandra Layland, can be divided into three different parts comprising this collection. This is aimed at children from preschool to the third grade reading level. The first two stories, “Tiyo, the Dog Who Saved Ansgar” and “Bright Star, A Pony of the Kimbrii,” are directed at very young readers. The narration comes from the animal character in each story, the first a dog, the second a pony. They “talk” to the reader about their roles and responsibilities, especially in regards to their interactions with people. It has some educational value as well, discussing topics such as caverns vs. caves, the roles of stallions vs. lead mares, etc. I found the accompanying pictures to be an important part of the stories, as they give a pictorial representation of the story offered. I found the artwork to be excellent and believe that young children will certainly enjoy them.
The third story, “In A Land Far Away,” is a first person story, set in rhyme, about the dreams and wishes of being with horses and dogs. Some of the pictures are duplicated from the first two books, but can also serve as good repetition. Most of the lines scan well, making it a lovely way to present a story. The final offering by Layland, called “A Windflower Saga Chapter Book,” is a gentle adventure of two girls, Keri and Kalina. It covers a good part of their lives as friends, their family members, and their journey in obtaining supplies. Numerous characters are introduced in the story, which might be overwhelming for readers to follow and cause them to become lost. But in all, this is a rich, childlike experience that young readers will enjoy. The Ansgar Kids Treasury is definitely a recommended read for children.