Befriended by a whale as he is drowning in the ocean, a mouse gets a chance to reciprocate years later in an equally unlikely situation.
“A simple, matter-of-fact story about friendship. Lovely watercolor pictures and a funny, well-written text which presents its plot coincidences in tongue-in-cheek manner fit together admirably in this faintly Aesopian tale.” Starred, School Library Journal
“There is no question that Steig's affectionately witty pictures and perfectly complementary narration make this a durable picture book friendship.” Kirkus Reviews
“The book is funny and earnest, pellucid and profound.” The New York Times Book Review
“A simple, matter-of-fact story about the friendship between a mouse and a whale. . .Lovely watercolor pictures and a funny, well-written text which presents its plot coincidences in tongue-in-cheek manner fit together admirably in this faintly Aesopian tale.” Starred, School Library Journal
Meet the Author
William Steig (1907-2003) was a cartoonist, illustrator and author of award-winning books for children, including Shrek!, on which the DreamWorks movies are based. Steig was born in New York City. Every member of his family was involved in the arts, and so it was no surprise when he decided to become an artist. He attended City College and the National Academy of Design. In 1930, Steig's work began appearing in The New Yorker, where his drawings have been a popular fixture ever since. He published his first children's book, Roland the Minstrel Pig, in 1968.
In 1970, Steig received the Caldecott Medal for Sylvester and the Magic Pebble. His books for children also include Dominic; The Real Thief; The Amazing Bone, a Caldecott Honor Book; Amos & Boris, a National Book Award finalist; and Abel's Island and Doctor De Soto, both Newbery Honor Books. Steig's books have also received the Christopher Award, the Irma Simonton Black Award, the William Allen White Children's Book Award, and the American Book Award. His European awards include the Premio di Letteratura per l'infanzia (Italy), the Silver Pencil Award (the Netherlands), and the Prix de la Fondation de France. On the basis of his entire body of work, Steig was selected as the 1982 U.S. candidate for the Hans Christian Andersen Medal for Illustration and subsequently as the 1988 U.S. candidate for Writing.
Stieg also published thirteen collections of drawings for adults, beginning with About People in 1939, and including The Lonely Ones, Male/Female, The Agony in the Kindergarten, and Our Miserable Life.
He died in Boston at the age of 95.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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This is the best children's book of all time. When I was little I used to cry every time at the end, and then ask my dad to read it to me again. But he couldn't because he would be crying too. I have never read a more touching and uplifting tale of friendship. Whenever anyone asks me to recommend a children's book, this is always the first one on my list! So go ahead and get it--you won't be sorry.
A moralistic book about the strength and power of friendship of an unlikely duo. Reminiscent of the fable the Lion and the Mouse, Amos & Boris was my favorite bedtime story as a toddler... and the book I learned to read on.
There is something about this seemingly simple story and seemingly plain drawings that makes me want to return to it time and again. I have given it to all my very young cousins and am about to order another copy for a five-year-old friend. It's just a good story and the simplicity adds value. We don't always need or want fancy formats or glorious paintings. ..
The whale helps the mouse at sea, then the mouse helps the whale at sea, then they must part. A great story of a 'different kind' of friendship, but a friendship nonetheless.