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In Like a Lion, Out Like a Lamb

Overview

In this exuberant story, March, personified as a lion, enters a boy's cozy home and leaves a trail of snow flurries and muddy footprints. Then, escorted by grass, flowers, sunshine, showers, and animal babies large and small, in comes the lamb. The illustrations, a profusion of color and energetic line, celebrate March, spring, and life itself!

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Overview

In this exuberant story, March, personified as a lion, enters a boy's cozy home and leaves a trail of snow flurries and muddy footprints. Then, escorted by grass, flowers, sunshine, showers, and animal babies large and small, in comes the lamb. The illustrations, a profusion of color and energetic line, celebrate March, spring, and life itself!

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Editorial Reviews

Pamela Paul
…Bauer turns the shopworn simile into a fresh, rousing story about lion and lamb.
—The New York Times
Publishers Weekly
Newbery Honor–author Bauer (On My Honor) and Caldecott-winning artist McCully (Mirette on the High Wire) have fun with a familiar weather simile. A feisty lion is first on the scene: "March comes with a roar./ He rattles your windows/ and scratches at your door. He turns snow to mud,/ then tromps across your floor." The animal taunts a child whose home he muddies (" ‘Were you expecting spring?' he snickers./ ‘Reach for your slickers' ") before stubbornly settling in, a raincloud over his head. The lamb arrives, comically, in the spray of the lion's sneeze amid a shower of flower petals, taking over as the lion curls up in the sun. As the tale closes, the lamb assembles baby animals (and a human infant in a pram) in a verdant meadow, yet splashes of visual humor (the book ends with the lamb sneezing out a summer's worth of insects) save it from becoming too syrupy. The palette of McCully's wispy pen-and-ink and watercolor art brightens as spring blooms, while the cadence and rhyme of Bauer's verse are as variable as March itself. Ages 4–8. (Mar.)
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—A March lion roars through a little boy's house, tracking in mud, sleet, and hail. No amount of coaxing convinces him to leave until on "one soft morning," buds and birds appear and a spring lamb rides in on the lion's gigantic sneeze. While the big cat retreats and sleeps until winter's return, the lamb presides over the new animal and plant life that signals the change of season. The large, lively illustrations, rendered in pen and ink and watercolor, depict a cantankerous lion intent on spreading blustery mayhem. In contrast, the lamb frolics in on wisps of pale green that give way to the awakening colors of spring. Animals poke their heads out of bushes and join in a comical parade featuring, among the revelers, the boy and his baby sibling, a monkey and nest of bird eggs riding on an elephant, and a roller-skating cat. Finally, the lamb, in turn, sneezes in a summery mix of bugs and flowers. The simple text plays with the popular metaphors, but the rhyme is occasionally forced. Julia Rawlinson's Fletcher and the Springtime Blossoms (2009) and Douglas Florian's poems about springtime in Handsprings (2006, both HarperCollins/Greenwillow) are better vehicles for celebrating the delights of this special season.—Marianne Saccardi, formerly at Norwalk Community College, CT
Kirkus Reviews - Kikus Reviews

In Bauer's capable hands, the age-old simile of March coming in like a lion and going out like a lamb is made quite literal. Readers follow as, one after the other, they visit the house of one little boy. "March comes with a roar. / He rattles your windows / and scratches at your door. / He turns snow to mud, / then tromps across your floor." The lion wreaks utter havoc—until the day when the soft breeze and new tree buds cause the lion to sneeze. Riding the wave of that sneeze, the lamb comes prancing in, ushering in all things spring. And that lion? Is he going to lurk about and cause trouble? No, his rumbles are snores now, and he'll sleep away the days until next March. Bauer cleverly uses her transition sneeze to set up the possibility of a sequel—summer bugs ride in on the lamb's mighty "A-A-A-A-CHOO!" While the text provides the skeleton, McCully's pen, ink and watercolor illustrations truly bring the old song to life. Her lion is a wonderful cross between a fierce foe, threatening with his teeth and claws, and a party pooper, making a mess and spoiling any good times outdoors. Meanwhile, the lamb is a perfect ball of snow-white fluff. Spare backgrounds during the lion's reign echo the bleakness of the weather and change to light blues and greens as the lamb takes charge. A good addition to the spring shelf, it is sure to find its way, roaring and bleating, to classrooms studying similes.(Picture book. 4-8)

Kirkus Reviews

In Bauer's capable hands, the age-old simile of March coming in like a lion and going out like a lamb is made quite literal. Readers follow as, one after the other, they visit the house of one little boy. "March comes with a roar. / He rattles your windows / and scratches at your door. / He turns snow to mud, / then tromps across your floor." The lion wreaks utter havoc—until the day when the soft breeze and new tree buds cause the lion to sneeze. Riding the wave of that sneeze, the lamb comes prancing in, ushering in all things spring. And that lion? Is he going to lurk about and cause trouble? No, his rumbles are snores now, and he'll sleep away the days until next March. Bauer cleverly uses her transition sneeze to set up the possibility of a sequel—summer bugs ride in on the lamb's mighty "A-A-A-A-CHOO!" While the text provides the skeleton, McCully's pen, ink and watercolor illustrations truly bring the old song to life. Her lion is a wonderful cross between a fierce foe, threatening with his teeth and claws, and a party pooper, making a mess and spoiling any good times outdoors. Meanwhile, the lamb is a perfect ball of snow-white fluff. Spare backgrounds during the lion's reign echo the bleakness of the weather and change to light blues and greens as the lamb takes charge. A good addition to the spring shelf, it is sure to find its way, roaring and bleating, to classrooms studying similes.(Picture book. 4-8)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780823424320
  • Publisher: Holiday House, Inc.
  • Publication date: 2/28/2012
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 369,318
  • Age range: 4 - 7 Years
  • Lexile: AD450L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.80 (w) x 9.80 (h) x 0.20 (d)

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