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For centuries birds and their magnificent ability to fly have inspired tales of mischief, mystery, and enchantment. In a collection that is as beautiful as it is timeless, award-winning author Howard Norman and Caldecott medalists Leo and Diane Dillon offer five bird stories from around the world--including one about an elusive bird that sings like a warthog and another about a much loved quail dying of thirst.
This glorious collaboration is the perfect gift for any family library, a book that children and parents alike will treasure.
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HOWARD NORMAN is an award-winning author of fiction and a respected translator of folklore. His illustrated story collections for children include The Girl Who Dreamed Only Geese and Trickster and the Fainting Birds. He divides his time between Washington, D.C., and Vermont.
LEO & DIANE DILLON are two-time Caldecott medalists and have together illustrated more than twenty-five books, including The Girl Who Dreamed Only Geese. They live in New York City.
Grade 3 Up–The birds in these five well-crafted folktales possess wisdom, are engaged in trickery, or teach lessons about sorrow or jealousy. And the lovely, secretive swans are village ancestors transformed upon dying as humans. Collected at the International Folklore Workshop at the University of Maryland, the stories might be viewed as contemporary manifestations of the oral tradition. All are remembered from childhoods spent far away in Australia, China, Matabeleland, Norway, and Sri Lanka. Smoothly polished and beautifully illustrated, the narratives portray characters, themes, and magical elements familiar in folklore. A pelican that owns the only fishnet in the world and a troublesome troll with an intriguing scarf of live crows will interest children in the early grades. The greater complexities and subtleties of the other three will pique the interest of older readers and listeners. The Dillons have broadly adapted folk motifs into selected scenes from each story. Thick outlines and muted colors suggest the wax-resist printing common to textiles in several of these countries. This collection offers versatile possibilities for use across the curriculum as well as inviting tales for personal enjoyment, reading aloud, and storytelling. A concluding essay identifies the actual contributors and offers personal information about them.–Margaret Bush, Simmons College, Boston
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