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Find out what Mumsnetters thought of children's book Flying Fergus: The Winning Team

(31 Posts)
SorchaMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 28-Feb-17 13:46:58

Flying Fergus: The Winning Team is the latest magical cycling adventure from Olympic champion Chris Hoy, suitable for children aged five to seven.

The Hercules' Hopefuls are going to the Nationals, and not even their arch rivals Wallace's Winners can wipe the smiles off their faces. But to stand a chance of beating them and the Velociraptors (the terrifying all-girls speed squad), Wesley and Fergus will need to work together. It's Fergus's biggest challenge yet...

We ask all winners to share their child's thoughts about the book on this discussion thread. Everyone who gives detailed feedback on Flying Fergus: The Winning Team by midday Monday 24 April will be entered into a prize draw to win a £100 Love2shop voucher:

This giveaway is sponsored by Piccadilly Press

Book giveaways T&Cs apply

barricade Wed 22-Mar-17 01:58:35

Many thanks to Mumsnet / Picadilly Press for a copy of 'FLYING FERGUS: THE WINNING TEAM' which we safely received today.

The 'Flying Fergus' books are, of course, written by Olympic champion Chris Hoy. And the buzz from Great Britain’s Olympics success will make this book highly anticipated.

Following on from their triumph in the District Championships in their last adventure, Fergus and his team are chasing success in the Nationals. But with 2 team members down, is it over for Hercules’ Hopefuls, or is it time for an unlikely truce with their local rivals, Wallace’s Winners? And can Fergus finally persuade his long-gone father to leave Nevermore and return back with him?

Overall, this is a light, fun & humorous read. The book is presented in a delightful way, with maps and character profiles, and with crisp, cartoon illustrations by Clare Elsom. These narrative elements significantly enhance the reading experience. There's no doubt that this book is intended for adolescents, and contains sophomoric humour sure to be appreciated by modern-day kids. However, there are some challenging terms and phrases. By way of example, on page 58, the character Chimp describes himself as not having “opposable thumbs or a prehensile tail”. Additionally, younger children are not likely to know what a “fancy man” is.

One of several books in the series, the story is great at generating interest in both casual and competitive cycling. Works well for young readers of both gender, and will sure to leave them wanting more.


kaydeed Wed 29-Mar-17 10:03:35

My seven year old read and enjoyed this book. We had not read or seen any other books by Chris hoy so was interested to see his writing style. Positives are it is an enjoyable and thought provoking read. Negatives some of the wording and phrases I would say are beyond a child's ability at that age.

ptak5566 Wed 29-Mar-17 10:26:58

Our 7 year old thoroughly enjoyed it, his dad cycles a lot so was very interested in the theme. We have a new velodrome in Derby and he is very keen to visit there now. This book truly captivated his imagination although did have to explain some of the paraphrasing.

GranAnn42 Wed 29-Mar-17 11:22:46

Daughter enjoyed reading the book at bedtime to grandchildren. Thanks for the prize.

Mozarmstrong Wed 29-Mar-17 12:21:08

Received my copy brilliant book I am reading it to Dylan who loves his new cycle. Having to explain some of the lines to him but he adores it and has tried to draw the front cover. Very good content I myself enjoyed it

gillycard Thu 30-Mar-17 14:37:13

Many thanks for our free book. It is currently being read by my 7 year old who is a reluctant reader but she is very happy reading it with no complaint so a big achievement. She is liking the fact that there are key pieces of suspense in it, which according to her teacher at school are key to a good story !

DoubleR Thu 30-Mar-17 19:43:05

My daughter (7) loved this book, she read it in one evening and wouldn't put it down until she had finished. She found it quite easy to read and liked Princess Lily and Fergus the best. She hadn't read any of Chris Hoy's books before, but she's keen to get the others now. She was also interested to hear about the author and his Olympic accomplishments, and it has encouraged her to learn to ride her own bike, which she hasn't really wanted to do before.

hanliying Fri 31-Mar-17 12:01:12

My son previously haven't read any Chris Hoy's book and loved this book. It took him about a week to finish and he loves Fergus the best.

lolly2010 Wed 05-Apr-17 13:09:19

Thank you for the book, we love the illustrations, both boys enjoyed it, I read at as a bedtime story to my youngest(aged 5) he first couple of pages are a little hard to follow as there are alot of brackets in the introduction but the story is great. My eldest really enjoyed the story ( age 10) telling me about the Velociraptors training regime. This is a great story.

skippink Wed 05-Apr-17 13:25:17

Thanks for our book,it's ideal for 5-7 years olds.
My daughter has not read it all but she is throughly enjoying it so far. The illustrations are very good too. Brilliant book!

amapola Sun 09-Apr-17 06:37:30

I thought my son, 7, who loves cycling and reading was going to love this book however he didn't. He did not say much about it but my understanding is that he did not engage with any of the characters. I read it as well, my view is that although the story is simple the way is written and some of the vocabulary is not. Sorry my comments are a bit negative but I thought is better to be honest.

lucyloves Mon 10-Apr-17 12:26:31

Thank you for the book! My 7 year old is just getting into cycling and loves magic so he was excited to get reading! His verdict was positive! He liked the crazy characters and the suspense of the cycling competition but his most favourite part was when Fergus gets up speed, pedals backwards and flies through time and space to the parallel universe of Nevermore where his Dad is trapped in a dungeon! Thrilling!
The illustrations are fantastic!

AngelaMc1 Wed 19-Apr-17 12:13:15

Thank you for the book. Took it on holiday with us and read to my 5 year old. He has a clear idea what he likes (football and anything with naughty children!) so wasn't sure how he would feel about Flying Fergus as not enough footballs but he loved it and found it laugh out loud funny in places.
I was worried it may be too complex for us to pick up and put down and still follow but it held his interest and he really wanted to know what was going to happen next. The illustrations are well placed and added light relief and a talking point just where we needed them.
Loved it. Thank you!

SpagettiNetty Thu 20-Apr-17 22:11:43

I received this book and read it at bedtimes with my 6 year old and 9 year old. My 9 year old was very interested in the fact it had been written by Chris Hoy, and was eager to listen to the book.

My 6 year old really enjoyed this book. He loved the pictures of the characters in the front of the book - we haven't read any of the other books in this series, and I think the pictures helped him feel like he "knew" the characters.

The illustrations throughout the book were lovely too, they were fun and gave the boys something to talk about. They especially loved the pictures of the castle and the dungeons.

Both boys enjoyed the book, although I think my 9 year old was slightly too old for it. My 6 year old loved it though. His favourite parts were the parts set in Nevermore, I think because he loves anything to do with castles and kings.

As a parent, I liked the character of Princess Lily, and I thought it was good for my boys to see a girl main character who was smart and fiesty.

My youngest son said it was sad at the end of the book when Fergus realises his dad is never coming home, I was worried this would upset him, but straight away he said he can still see him in Nevermore, and he seemed to accept this and was happy.

Overall, my 6 year old enjoyed this book, and I think we will be looking for the other books in the series next time we visit the library.

lucyrobinson Fri 21-Apr-17 21:23:43

Both my children aged 6&9 loved this book. Great plot and characters. Really good illustrations. The story was very exciting and very well written. Highly recommend this book for children aged 6+.

TellMeItsNotTrue Sat 22-Apr-17 10:23:24

We were lucky enough to win a copy of Flying Fergus: The championship cheats, last year and 9yr (now 10yr old) enjoyed that much that santa brought her more from the series. She enjoyed them and is now lending with constant reminders that it's only lending! them to 7yr old who is also liking them

star This book and the series as a whole star

I think the target age is a bit confusing as there are parts that are really simple and aimed at younger readers but then there are some words used which they have both had to ask about, and it deals with tricky subjects like the dad being gone. I would not read this with a 5yr old, I would say 8 would be perfect but age range I would go for is 7-10

I think it's a great series though, good for boys and girls, strong characters and good descriptions for visualising. We like the illustrations and think there is the correct ratio of words to pictures

Celama Mon 24-Apr-17 11:46:36

This was a nice, short and easy to read story that both my son and daughter enjoyed; although they haven't previously read any of the Flying Fergus books, neither felt that they struggled as there was a comprehensive summary of previous plots at the beginning of the tale.

I particularly enjoyed that there was a fair smattering of Scottish vernacular throughout and the kids enjoyed seeing 'beast" in print and told me this meant it was "proper" English after all!

I would have liked to have seen Joanna Nadin being given more acknowledgement as co-author however as I suspect that the bulk of the work was hers.

danson16 Tue 25-Apr-17 13:41:54

I must admit I was unsure about whether or not I would like this book or if my children would. I had never heard of Flying Fergus before receiving this one.
I think the age range is appropriate for this book, especially these days where kids seem to have matured quicker!!
My kids loved the story and really liked being able to have some visuals from it. The drawings inside fitted well with the story and they looked good.
My kids loved the characters and loved the castle. Overall this was a great read and would definitely look into getting more of the Flying Fergus collection.
Thank you for giving me the opportunity to read it with my children.

piratetoes Thu 27-Apr-17 12:12:52

My 7 year old was very excited to get a copy of this in the post!

I read it to him as it was a little out of his reading range. We certainly enjoyed it and it's a series I had been considering buying for him anyway.

We will recommend it to others of a similar age.

lucyrobinson Mon 30-Oct-17 14:27:35

My 6 year old boy and 9 year old girl loved this. Both love riding their bikes. They thought the cover was exciting. I read it to both my children. They enjoyed the characters and the story. Plot was interesting and it kept them engaged. Highly recommend.

Sammyislost Mon 30-Oct-17 15:11:16

Excuses for not reviewing sooner, I had no idea the book was from Mumsnet. But thank you!

My son, then aged 6, read the book, but said it was only 'okay'. It didn't grip him or excite him, or make him want to read any more of the series.

GranAnn42 Mon 30-Oct-17 16:10:46

Shared the book with grandchildren. They seemed to enjoy the story even though some parts took explaining

Scorpiostar Mon 30-Oct-17 20:38:16

Both of my children (7 year old girl and 9 year old boy) were very excited that they "won" a copy and were arguing over who would read it first. Unfortunately, neither of them finished it. They didn't find it engaging enough to stick with it to the end. It's a shame because I though that they would find the subject interesting, being keen cyclists themselves.

skippink Tue 31-Oct-17 09:43:44

Thank you for our copy
My daughter had really enjoyed reading the book.
My daughter is 7 years old and was just right for her.

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