Henny Penny

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Children's Literature
The cry of "The sky is falling!" never sounded or looked as funny as in this new riff on the very old story. Photographer/artist Wattenberg's retelling combines wonderfully wicked lightning-ridden skies with surreal acorns hanging from barren witch trees and Henny-Penny in the middle of it all, just asking for that whack on the head. The hen scuttles through landscapes dominated by Stonehenge, the Great Pyramids, the Leaning Tower of Pisa and more, bearing her message of catastrophe to her fowl friends. Alas, they all collide with Foxy-Loxy in the environs of the Parthenon and we know what happens next. Wattenberg's pun-filled prose should keep youngsters in stitches, while her photo-compositions, highlighted by marvelous close-ups of fox and fowl, will delight them. After reading her first picture book, youngsters and adults alike will cluck for more. 2000, Scholastic, Ages 2 to 6, $15.95. Reviewer: Kathleen Karr
Kirkus Reviews
'Tis the season for sassy retellings of classic tales, as in Marjorie Priceman's Froggie Went A-Courting (see above). Wattenberg recasts the "sky is falling" routine into a version that kids familiar with rap and hip-hop will immediately comprehend. When whacked on the head with an acorn, that fine red hen Henny-Penny squawks, "Chickabunga! The sky is falling! It's coming on down! I must run and tell the King." And so she heads out, picking up rooster Cocky-Locky, Ducky-Lucky, and Drake-Cake, Goosey-Loosey and Gander-Lander (that Glam-Gal and that He-Hunk) and so on even unto Turkey-Lurkey. But Foxy-Loxy lures them astray with promises of a shortcut to the King, so only Henny-Penny escapes. (The back cover illustration muses, "Was it REALLY all my fault?") The pictures are photomontages of actual fowl belonging to the author with key images—a golden crown, Stonehenge, the Tower of Pisa, the Parthenon, among other famous architectural wonders—set in a wild landscape that ranges from craggy hills to forest glens. The text works with italics, all capitals, boldface, and rubrication to keep the energy going. And while Henny-Penny never did tell the King the sky was falling, she does lay one humongous egg. Sure to evoke lots of giggling at story hour. (Picture book/folktale. 5-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780439078177
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 4/28/2000
  • Pages: 40
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD430L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 10.32 (w) x 10.28 (h) x 0.21 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2002

    Shake Rattle and Roll!! Its a new version and its great!!

    The retelling of this classic tale by Jane Wattenberg is hilarious! My two young children cannot get enough of this story. Its is amusing to read as well as to listen to. This book has become a family favorite, and we highly recommend it for some great fun.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 5, 2000

    The Librarian Loved It!

    As an elementary school media specialist, I was excited to find a 'modern' interpretation of the Henny Penny story. The language is rich and very amusing. The artwork is just wonderful. I hope this is the first in a series from Ms. Wattenberg!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 28, 2000

    Graphic Henny

    Wattenberg brings Henny into the new century with millennial graphics bigtime.Her Mac was used beatifully forthe enjoyment of children.A revivalworth a look!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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