Parents' Guide to

The Abominables

By Sally Engelfried, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 8+

Sweet story of yetis' quest for home best for young readers.

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A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this book.

Community Reviews

age 7+

Based on 1 parent review

age 7+

Sweet tale with some intense moments

My son was not quite 7 years old when we chose this as a read-together book. He loved this book and was eager to read a chapter each night before bedtime. There were some intense moments that I chose to edit a little as I went along - e.g., cruelty to animals in a zoo and during a bullfight, some alcohol references, and a boy (good guy) threatens to kill a man (bad guy) if he doesn't tell him information he needs. There are also intense moments I chose to read as-is that were a little sad for my son (the yetis do face some danger, one becomes depressed, and there are sad goodbyes), but we worked through them. As the CSM review does state, the good guys are clearly good, and the bad guys are clearly bad, and there is a happy ending. Overall, I thought it was a well-written and exciting book to read with my little boy. I recommend it to young ones with a few reservations.
1 person found this helpful.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (1):
Kids say (1):

True to author Eva Ibbotson's usual form, in this compelling tale, the good guys are very good, the bad guys are very bad, and the moral questions have clear answers. When the kids and the yetis find an intolerable situation or difficulty, they solve the problem with quick dispatch, barely even giving readers a chance to worry. The only exception to this is the exciting climax, when the yetis are in danger and it's uncertain whether the kids can advocate for their friends in time to save them.

The theme of protecting the environment and its creatures runs through many of Ibbotson's books, and, as in The Island of the Aunts, the sincerity and goodwill of the characters prevent the message from being too didactic. However, The Abominables lacks the complexity of her more masterful novels such as The Secret of Platform 13 or Journey to the River Sea. More sophisticated readers will find it predictable and possibly even saccharine, but it's perfect for kids who want something funny and comforting with a happy ending.

Book Details

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