Children's Literature - Children's LiteratureWhen Brian, blind since he was four years old, receives a parakeet on his birthday, he begs for descriptions of Scratchy so he can visualize what he looks like. Soon Scratchy (named for how his feet feel when he perches on Brian's finger) is greeting Brian, and saying lots of things. When Brian's older brother forgets to close the front door and Scratchy escapes, Kevin redeems himself when he helps Brian coax Scratchy back inside. Kids who may have wanted a pet parakeet will enjoy the story while gaining insight into a blind boy's daily life. This interesting, real, but never sappy story about brothers who fight and the plight of the youngest is depicted with bright illustrations that offer an interesting variety of perspectives. 2000, Albert Whitman & Company, Ages 4 to 9, $14.95. Reviewer: Martha Shaw
School Library JournalGr 1-3-Brian, a blind child, gets a parakeet for his eighth birthday. He teaches Scratchy to talk and allows him to fly around the house, calling on his grandmother when help is needed to find his pet. His older brother Kevin is very supportive, but like many children, sometimes forgets to shut the door. One day the bird gets out, but fortunately, he only flies to a nearby tree and with Kevin's guidance, Brian is able to coax Scratchy onto his finger and to safety. The perilous open door is foreshadowed in the beginning of the book. This is a simple story featuring a loving African-American family. The brightly colored illustrations show the feelings of the boys and provide particularly good images of the bird. Use this book with Nicola Moon's Lucy's Picture (Dial, 1995) to show how children can lead normal lives even when dealing with a disability.-Margaret C. Howell, West Springfield Elementary School, VA Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.|
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Brian's Bird is truly an inspirational story about a young boy and a bird he recieved as a birthday present. He is truly enthrawled with this pet, trying to teach it to talk and when it does, it lights up Brian like a christmas tree full of twinkle lights. The story is captivating and full of energy. I would recommend this story to everyone. The pictures are outstanding and vibrant with colour.