Great things come in small packages

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By Huw Thomasheadteacher and writer

Explorer, action hero, stunt kid, escape artist and 400 years old… Just who is Charlie Small?

Charlie Small: The Puppet Master

Celebrate the National Year of Literacy with the Charlie Small series and our linked activities

The Charlie Small stories (David Fickling Books £4.99 PB) recount the adventures of an ordinary boy who finds himself transported to a series of incredible adventures involving gorillas, pirates, giant slugs, an evil puppet-master and the Wild West. The books are presented by the publisher as the discovered journals of this ‘real kid’ – Charlie. And who are we to disagree? While homing in on the recent Charlie Small: The Puppet Master, this article presents some features common to all the Charlie Small stories.

Reading and enjoying adventure stories involves learning to inhabit the dangers that they throw at their characters. The Charlie Small stories present hazards and escapes, providing readers with an opportunity to explore this daring realm of fiction.

1. Hazard and escape

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