Coyote Steals the Blanket

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In vivid browns, tans and blues befitting its desert setting, Stevens's latest retelling stars a rapscallion bent on pilfering a blanket. After all, Coyote reasons, the blankets are merely covering some big boulders--who would notice? The wise Hummingbird warns the crafty critter that he will upset the balance of things by taking what doesn't belong to him. But Coyote steals the blanket (``I would look fine dressed up in this. I could wear it as a new coat'') and a mad race ensues as the offended boulder rolls after the thief, who refuses to give up his booty. Frenetic drawings with a kid-like sensibility propel the story at breakneck pace from one vigorous scene to the next--Mule Deer tries to block the boulder and gets his antlers snapped off; Big Horn Sheep is flattened by the marauding rock. No excessive violence here, however, as the overall tone is reminiscent of a Roadrunner cartoon--and the subtle lesson about respecting the possessions of others may just seep into little ones' consciousness. Ages 4-8. (Apr.)
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-- ``I go where I want, I do what I want, and I take what I want,'' Coyote brags. But when he ignores Hummingbird's warning and takes a beautiful blanket that doesn't belong to him, he finds himself relentlessly pursued by a magical boulder. Only Hummingbird can save him, but nothing and no one can change his rascally and greedy nature, as the last picture cleverly demonstrates. These illustrations provide the perfect visual foil for this comic tale based on a Ute Indian story. This retelling is considerably shortened and simplified, making the story accessible to a younger audience. Stevens's loose, breezy style imbues Coyote, a trickster figure in many Native American tales, with an appropriately scrappy and disreputable personality. Small sequential drawings, interspersed with richly colored, full-page illustrations, propel the story forward at a rapid clip. The pace and action are reminiscent of the old Roadrunner cartoons, but the art here is much more subtle and sophisticated. The scratchy line and spontaneous strokes give the book an ebullient feeling, while the attention to facial expression and comic detail deepens and enrichs the text. A beautifully designed and well-made book, Coyote deserves a place in folklore collections of any size, and will be a valuable addition to story times and read-aloud programs. --Linda Boyles, Alachua County Library District, Gainesville, FL
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3--When Coyote swipes a blanket, thus angering the spirit of the desert, he is pursued by a rock on a rampage. This traditional trickster tale features a scraggly, scruffy yet lovable character, a narrative that will roll right off storytellers' tongues, and hilarious pictures of boastful animals trying to halt the furious boulder. (June 1993)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780823411290
  • Publisher: Holiday House, Inc.
  • Publication date: 10/28/1994
  • Edition description: REPRINT
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 536,063
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: 400L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.32 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.16 (d)

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