Hamsters to the Rescue

Hamsters to the Rescue

4.7 14
by Ellen Stoll Walsh
     
 

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Henry and Pell have plenty of determination and courage. Never mind that they're just a couple of hamsters. They're hamsters with a mission--they found a feather and need to return it to the seagull that lost it. Nothing they encounter along the way will stop them. Not giant sand dunes. Not cranky crabs. Not even the big scary seagull himself!

Ellen Stoll

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Overview


Henry and Pell have plenty of determination and courage. Never mind that they're just a couple of hamsters. They're hamsters with a mission--they found a feather and need to return it to the seagull that lost it. Nothing they encounter along the way will stop them. Not giant sand dunes. Not cranky crabs. Not even the big scary seagull himself!

Ellen Stoll Walsh's gently suspenseful story about perseverance includes a fun seek-and-find shell game at the end of the book.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Henry and Pell, two hamsters, find a seagull feather on the beach. Fearing that the gull who lost it may need it to fly, they set out bravely through the sand and over rocks to return it. On their way they meet a hermit crab. The feather then blows into a tide pool, where they take the rather bedraggled feather from a fiddler crab and proceed to break it by mistake. When the intimidatingly large seagull appears, they apologize, but he reassures them that he does not need it and thanks them for their kind efforts. He gives them some hamster-size feathers to use so they can play at flying; then it is time to go home. The simple tale of two friends' adventurous romp and discoveries ends with a challenge to find eight shells that are hidden in the illustrations. Walsh's cut-paper collages combine a concern for natural history with a strong sense of design. The hamsters are brimming with engaging personality as they go about their search in this innocent story told with visual charm. 2005, Harcourt, Ages 3 to 7.
—Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1-This tale lacks the simplicity and tight plotting that have made Walsh's previous books so successful. Pell and Henry find a seagull feather and decide to return it. Their trip to find the owner leads them along the seashore where they have a series of short adventures and meet some seaside dwellers. Finally, they reach the bird, who thanks them for the return of his now-broken feather and gives them plumes of their own. After playing with them, they decide to find their way home. The meandering plot, while extremely childlike, lacks momentum, some of the phrasing is awkward, and the ending is abrupt. The final page includes a picture of shells and the question: "Can you find these shells in Henry and Pell's story?," implying a search-and-find game, which may be the only motivation for repeated readings. Walsh's appealing hamsters and the backgrounds in her signature cut-paper collages are easy on the eye, yet curiously static. The bright colors, interesting textures, and speckled rocks are pleasing to look at, and readers will learn about seaside animals along the way. Unfortunately, the story feels overburdened and is less than satisfying.-Amy Lilien-Harper, The Ferguson Library, Stamford, CT Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Two male hamsters, Henry and Pell, find a feather during a visit to the beach. As they attempt to find the seagull who lost the feather, they meet a hermit crab and a fiddler crab. When the hamsters finally find the seagull, he explains that he can grow new feathers and he gives the hamsters some small feathers of their own to play with. The final page shows eight different kinds of shells that were included in the previous illustrations so young readers can go back to search for them. Walsh's characteristic cut-paper collage illustrations are appealing, as usual, and the story, though slight, has moments of humor and includes a few simple facts about the beach environment and the creatures the hamsters meet. (Picture book. 3-6)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780152052027
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
09/01/2005
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
40
Product dimensions:
8.50(w) x 9.50(h) x (d)
Lexile:
AD410L (what's this?)
Age Range:
1 - 3 Years

Meet the Author


ELLEN STOLL WALSH is the author and illustrator of many award-winning early concept books for young children, including Mouse Paint, Mouse Count, and the Dot and Jabber trilogy. She lives near Rochester, New York.

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