I Know a Librarian Who Chewed on a Word

( 1 )

Overview

All librarians love books, but have you ever met one who just ate them up . . . literally? Miss Devine does. In this adaptation of "There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly," one Dewey Decimal diva has gone on a most unusual eating binge. From chomping down the story-hour chair to savoring the nonfiction shelf, Miss Devine is trying to chase down one particularly perfect word.

As the story, told by a wide-eyed witness, gets more outlandish, the tension builds. Children all over...

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Overview

All librarians love books, but have you ever met one who just ate them up . . . literally? Miss Devine does. In this adaptation of "There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly," one Dewey Decimal diva has gone on a most unusual eating binge. From chomping down the story-hour chair to savoring the nonfiction shelf, Miss Devine is trying to chase down one particularly perfect word.

As the story, told by a wide-eyed witness, gets more outlandish, the tension builds. Children all over the library are dying to know: What combination of letters could have possibly started this absurdly all-consuming spree?

Laurie Lazzaro Knowlton is an award-winning children's author. Her best-selling book, Why Cowboys Sleep with Their Boots On, won the Premier Print Award from Eastman Kodak. A piece of art from another picture book, Red, White, and Blue, has been displayed by the Robert L. and Posy Huebner Collection and was highlighted on Martha Stewart's radio station. Her other books from Pelican include Cowgirl Alphabet, Why Cowgirls Are Such Sweet Talkers, Why Cowboys Need a Brand, Why Cowboys Need a Pardner, and Nana's Rice Pie. An international speaker, Knowlton loves kicking back on her ranch, Roots & Wings, in Medina, Ohio.

Award-winning artist Herb Leonhard has designed various promotional materials in support of local and national charities. His work has appeared in D Magazine and on album covers. Leonhard is the illustrator of Pelican's St. Patrick and the Three Brave Mice, Leonardo's Monster, A Southern Child's Garden of Verses, Way Out West on My Little Pony, and A Is for Alliguitar: Musical Alphabeasts. He lives in Prosser, Washington.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Heather Christensen
Knowlton's adaptation of "I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly," is sure to be popular with teachers and librarians. In this version of the popular cumulative song, a librarian swallows a word, then a book, a cart, chair, and finally an entire book shelf, much to the consternation of the children visiting the library. Between each verse, the children comment and exclaim on the unusual culinary behavior of their storyteller ("Yowzer! That had to hurt!"). One girl is particularly curious about the actual word the librarian ate, asking over and over "What's the word?" each time getting more and more frustrated as her question is ignored. Eventually, of course, the word is revealed, and while not unexpected, it is a word which will delight any storyteller, teacher, or librarian. Leonhard's vibrant illustrations show wide-eyed children of all colors, but the librarian is pure stereotype—high collar, glasses, and, yes, even a bun. The colors build in intensity as the song develops, then slow down with a nice calm blue as the librarian pops out the original word. Though not the strongest adaptation of this song, the book will nevertheless be an entertaining addition to library-themed storytimes.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2—Drawing on a cumulative rhyme similar to "I Know an Old Lady Who Swallowed…," Knowlton uses a stereotypical, bespectacled, bun-sporting librarian to tell a spin-off of the tale. Miss Devine devours assorted library items such as a book, a bookcart, a table, and a shelf, with the students each time exclaiming, "How absurd" before the conclusion. Their large, grotesque childlike faces are bug-eyed with astonishment at their librarian's antics. Their skin tones are garishly sunburned orange/red and a bizarre yellowish-brown to add to the outlandish tone. At the finale, the librarian's chewed word that everyone wants to know is anticlimactic. Nothing much new here that will hold interest past the initial reading.—Blair Christolon, Prince William Public Library System, Manassas, VA
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781589808928
  • Publisher: Pelican Publishing Company, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 2/15/2012
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 999,216
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.70 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

LAURIE LAZZARO KNOWLTON has authored more than 35 books. Her best-selling children's book Why Cowboys Sleep with Their Boots On won the Premier Print Award from Eastman Kodak. Art from another one of her picture books, Red, White, and Blue, has been displayed by the Robert L. and Posy Huebner Collection and was highlighted on Martha Stewart's radio station. An international speaker, Knowlton loves kicking back on her ranch, Roots 'n Wings.

Herb Leonhard has worked as a freelance illustrator and graphic designer for more than two decades. He specializes in children's book illustrations, portraiture based on music and entertainment themes, fantasy, floral, and landscape images. Through his advertising work, Leonhard has won numerous gold, silver, and merit awards. He has also designed various promotional materials in support of local and national charities.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 14, 2012

    the best book you'll ever read aloud to your kids

    Laurie Knowlton has the childlike spirit of a 7 year old .... she remembers the excitement, wonder and chaos of being a kid caught up in their make believe world. I KNOW A LIBRARIAN WHO CHEWED ON A WORD is a raucous circus of read aloud fun as the kids follow their librarian, Miss Devine, on her chomping spree. This escapade begins with the fine Miss Devine tearing a WORD from a library book and savoring its tastiness as she chews and chews and chews.

    The kids shadow their Librarian as she consumes one item after another, "a book, a book-cart, a shelf, a table", the whole while wondering what was that one word, that divine, tasty word, that started the eating frenzy?

    I love reading this book with different voices for each character and seeing the joy and delight with which my young listeners respond. Some books are meant to be read aloud with unabashed enthusiasm and abandonment of the "shhhhh, quiet" rule in the library.

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