The Macmillan Guided Readers provide a choice of enjoyable reading material for learners of English. The series is published at five levels - Starter, Beginner, Elementary, Intermediate and Upper. At Beginner Level, the control of content and language has the following main features: INFORMATION CONTROL: The stories are written in a fluent and pleasing style with straightforward plots and a restricted number of main characters. The cultural background is made explicit through both words and illustrations. Information which is vital to the story is clearly presented and repeated where necessary. STRUCTURE CONTROL: Special care is taken with sentence length. Most sentences contain only one clause, though compound sentences are used occasionally with the clauses joined by the conjunctions ?and?, ?but?, and ?or?. The use of these compound sentences gives the text balance and rhythm. The use of Past Simple and Past Continuous Tenses is permitted since these are the basic tenses used in narration and students must become familiar with these as they continue to extend and develop their reading ability. VOCABULARY CONTROL: At Beginner Level there is controlled vocabulary of approximately 600 basic words, so that the students with basic knowledge of English will be able to read with understanding and enjoyment. Help is also given in the form of vivid illustrations which are very closely related to the text.