The year is 1783. On a cozy French farm, there lives a sheep with an impossible dream: She wants to fly. Mouton's friend Canard the duck is sympathetic, but Cocorico the rooster insists that, without wings, Mouton will never take off. Still, Mouton is full of hope and determination—perhaps just enough to make her impossible dream come true.· Based on the true story of the world's first "passengered" hot-air balloon flight · Features an inventive heroine and a variety of fun-loving farm animals · Embraces the universal theme of following one's dreams and triumphing against all odds
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www.homestead.com/anikmcgroryFrom School Library Journal:
Kindergarten-Grade 2-When the Montgolfier brothers were experimenting with hot-air balloon flight in 1783, their first passengers were supposedly a sheep, a rooster, and a duck. If the animals survived, the men would know that the air in the sky was safe to breathe, and they could begin manned flights. McGrory has used this historical tidbit as the basis for her own flight of fancy. Mouton the sheep longs to fly, and spends hours examining the sketches the Montgolfiers leave in the barn. Canard, the duck, echoes her enthusiasm, but Cocorico, the rooster, is skeptical, insisting "sheep are not made to fly." The animals follow the brothers and their balloon to the palace of Versailles for its demonstration flight before Marie Antoinette. There, they are thrust into a basket and launched. The flight is successful, the animals are ecstatic, and the queen rewards them for their bravery. Unfortunately, the characterizations are flat, and as McGrory's focus is primarily on the passengers rather than on the unique brothers or the excitement surrounding this historically significant flight, the story remains grounded as well. The watercolor illustrations are pleasant but unexceptional. For a fun read about an animal and a hot-air balloon, stick with Mary Calhoun's Hot-Air Henry (Morrow, 1981).
Grace Oliff, Ann Blanche Smith School, Hillsdale, NJ
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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