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Little Tapir is sleeping next to his mother when he is woken by Spider and led deep inside the jungle following the beat of Spider's song. Monkeys, firebirds, snakes and insects all add their own rhythms to the music but when the beat stops and Tapir is all alone, he realises how dangerous the jungle can be. But Mother Tapir is there to save the day.
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Miriam Moss's many children's books include Scritch Scratch and The Sunshine Tree (Orchard) and The Snow Bear, The Snoops and Jigsaw (Templar). Arctic Song, illustrated by Adrienne Kennaway, which was her first book for Frances Lincoln, was published in 1999. Its follow-up, This is the Tree, was shortlisted for the Bisto Award in 2000 and in 2002 Frances Lincoln published her inspirational Horse Girl. Adrienne Kennaway studied at Ealing Art School and the Accademia de Belle Arte in Rome. Her previous titles for Frances Lincoln include Curious Clownfish, Rainbow Bird (both by Eric Maddem), Arctic Song and This is the Tree (both by Miriam Moss).From School Library Journal:
PreSchool-Grade 3–A story set in a South American tropical rain forest. Awakened by a falling raindrop, Little Tapir is invited by Spider to explore. As he follows the arachnid, leaving his sleeping mother behind, he begins to hear the jungle's song "in the beat of his feet." Here, the narrative switches to pulsing verses: "Deep in the jungle where cathedral trees/Rise like pillars with flickering leaves./From the break of day in the cool half-light,/The jungle sings all through the night." Rich, vibrant watercolors will captivate readers and draw them deeper into the forest with the little animal. The intoxicating song takes Little Tapir further and further away from his mother, until the beat suddenly stops at nightfall. When he realizes that he is lost, his happy mood is replaced by feelings of loneliness and fear. At this moment, his mother appears, relieved to find him safe. Together, they walk into the undergrowth, as the jungle song starts again. This endearing story captures the innocence of a child's spontaneous curiosity, and the rhythm of the language makes it a great read-aloud. A note provides a few facts about tropical rain forests.–Tracy Bell, Durham Public Schools, NC
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