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Home > Categories > Books > Kids - Middle > Lulu La Ru Steps up as a Step-Mum: Vol 1 - The Adventure Begins review

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Score: 8.8/10  [2 reviews]
3 out of 5
ProdID: 9208 - Lulu La Ru Steps up as a Step-Mum: Vol 1 - The Adventure Begins -  Written by Gina Bartlett

Lulu La Ru Steps up as a Step-Mum: Vol 1 - The Adventure Begins
March 2024

Lulu La Ru Steps up as a Step-Mum: Vol 1 - The Adventure Begins product reviews

Proud to promote NZ productsHowever it finds you, motherhood is a whole new world. Meet Lulu La Ru - a "Super Terrific Extra Parent" (also known as a S.T.E.P.-Mum). She's funny and sassy with a heart of gold, and is embracing her new life with a sense of humour and a "can do" attitude. Come share in her hilarious adventures as she rides the crazy, up-and-down roller-coaster of family life.

The cover design is by Amanda Sutcliffe, and the rest of the illustrations are by Jeremy Dia.

amanda sutcliffe   coco   gina bartlett   hugh   jeremy dia   lulu la ru   moxie press   nzmade   rosa   stepdaughter   stepmother   stepmum
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Click here to read the profile of sassy121

Review by: sassy121 (Amelia)
Dated: 22nd of April, 2024

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This Review: 9.3/10
Age Appropriate:
Score 9 out of 10
Score 9 out of 10
Score 10 out of 10
Personal Choice:
Score 9 out of 10

Nowadays for whatever reasons there seem to be more and more families that are becoming families consisting of a stepparent or two. This can be an exceptionally tough time for all involved, but especially the children involved, as this is such a big change, and adjustments need to be made. When I saw this book, I hoped that it would be a suitable book for the primary school aged children I teach as a few are currently dealing with parents that are separating, I hoped this would help them to see that it isn't always a bad thing.

The cover of this book is bright and vibrant, and we can see the main character Lulu La Ru with a couple of girls in the background, which we can safely assume are the stepchildren. Lulu looks like she is young and throws off the vibe that she would be a fun stepparent, but I guess we would have to read the story to find out for sure. The illustrations throughout the book are just as bright as the cover, and have a decent amount of attention to detail, there were not pictures on every page.

As I started to read the story, the first part gives us an insight into Lulu's life before meeting Hugh (the girl's father) how she could do what she liked but was feeling very alone. When Hugh and the girls move in with Lulu La Ru she finds it hard to adjust to having chaos with lots of stuff around, so she devised a plan to make lists to run the household like a business, however she quickly saw that her plan had gone awry. Throughout the rest of the book slowly Lulu starts to adapt to her new life as a stepmum, and gets used to the lack of privacy, not travelling in first class flight areas, and advocates for stepmums to not be seen as bad guys, to be treated. equally.

The book is written in rhyme which makes it nice and simple to read, and the storyline flows seamlessly. I think this would be a good story aimed at around the 7-year age mark. I look forward to seeing if the author makes more books about Lulu La Ru and the children and the adventures they have.

Click here to read the profile of savta

Review by: savta (Jo)
Dated: 14th of March, 2024

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This Review: 8.3/10
Age Appropriate:
Score 7 out of 10
Score 9 out of 10
Score 9 out of 10
Personal Choice:
Score 8 out of 10

I was interested in the subject of Lulu La Ru Steps up as a Step-mum: having acquired a stepmother myself at the age of ten after my birth mother died, I would have welcomed the chance to read about children in a similar situation. It can be a tricky adjustment for both new step-parents and kids as they learn about each other and work out the best fit for them.

The book layout is bright and very-kid friendly. I asked two children from different families, one aged eight and the other twelve, to read it for me and give their feedback. The eight-year-old was taken by the graphics, and opted to read it first. However, he found it quite difficult to follow and gave it back to me a day later. The storyline was a little too old for him to relate to even though he has a stepdad of his own.

Miss Twelve took it away for a weekend and her reaction was more helpful. She thought the whole idea of the book was excellent, and even though she has two biological parents, she has friends who are in the same position as Rosa and Coco. One of her friends is from a blended family so is coping with new siblings as well as a new stepmother; she alternates time between her birth mother, who lives alone, and her father and his new partner.

On her return, Miss Twelve was eager to discuss the book with me. She had loved the pictures but had two reservations about the text. First, she did not like the rhyming structure - as she said, it was ok for younger children, but stopped the flow in a text for older children. She would have preferred a more conventional narrative to tell the story, Her second observation, however, was one that surprised me. She said this was not a story for children at all; it was a book for adults looking at the issue of coping with a ready-made family. In her opinion, the story would have been better told from the viewpoint of the children if it were to appeal to its target audience (ages 7-12).

After this feedback, I enlisted the response of two of the adults in their families. Mr Eight's stepfather and Miss Twelve's mother were both happy to give their opinions too. Neither had yet read the book so they were coming to it without prejudice. Both gave similar responses to those of Miss Twelve! They thought the choice of subject matter was excellent because it is an area that affects most children, either directly or indirectly, and that it was time a book like this was made available. At the same time, they both said it was a book for parents, not children. The humour is delightful, but much of it is aimed towards older people. Mr Eight's stepfather suggested that there could be two parallel books, one told from Lulu's viewpoint, and the other telling the same story from the point of view of the two little girls.

All of this made me think - and I do agree with them. It is interesting that they came to the same conclusion. There is real potential here for a wonderful new series with the chance to allow step-parents and stepchildren to see themselves reflected in the world of fiction.

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