The Lion and the Little Red Bird

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
The universal language of art helps bridge the communication gap between a bird and the king of beasts in Kleven's ( Abuela ; Ernst ) latest picture book. When the bird notices the lion's bushy green tail, it piques her curiosity. The appendage, in fact, changes color daily, a phenomenon that exasperates the bird until she becomes privy to the secret: the lion has painted a sweeping mural inside his cave, using his tail as a brush. Though Kleven's vibrant combination of watercolor and mixed-media collage is a tasty visual smorgasbord, her insubstantial story lacks drama. Rather than incite wonder, the bird's questions grow increasingly annoying by mid-story. Children may find a challenge in guessing what color the lion's tail will be, as each consecutive spread provides a hint about the forthcoming transformation. The illustrations' intricate details--nesting birds, leaping frogs, flitting butterflies--add sparkle to scenes already resplendent with bold color and texture. Regrettably, the lustrous art does little to energize a plodding tale. Ages 3-7. (May)
Children's Literature - Susie Wilde
For children that are ready for a real story, author-illustrator Kleven's The Lion and the Little Red Bird starts simply. A red bird wonders at how a lion's tail changes color. She observes and marvels until the smiling lion rescues the shivering bird from a storm. Once inside his cave, she chirps happily amid his glowing art and the lion delights to the sound of her song. Kleven's art is brilliant collage that changes mood with her plot and exposes deep meaning without belaboring the point.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2-- A sweet and captivating book with gorgeous illustrations. Its story line and artwork both have unusual and unexpected qualities that work together to generate a magical, light mood. A little bird and a lion, friends although they don't understand one another's language, are inexplicably happy when they're together. The bird loves the sight of the lion's tail, which changes color daily. When the lion brings the bird into his cave, she understands the changes; the lion uses his tail as a paint brush for creating beautiful murals. In light of this knowledge, she sings her happiest song for him as their friendship deepens. Kleven's collages incorporate pastels, ink, paper, and wool. Their beautiful colors, surprising textures, and striking details give emotion and meaning to the story. She is especially successful in depicting the lion's gentleness and in suggesting the feelings that bond these two, which provides the power behind the story and fuel for readers' interest. A unique and worthwhile contribution to any collection. --Dorothy Houlihan, formerly at White Plains Public Library, NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780140558098
  • Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
  • Publication date: 2/28/1996
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 341,806
  • Age range: 5 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.43 (w) x 7.70 (h) x 0.10 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 8, 2011

    Great for kids of any age!

    For a school project I chose this book to read to 3rd graders and they loved it, we were even asked to read to another class as well.
    I also read it to my 3 and 4 yeard olds and right from the get go my daughter asked what color the lions tail was going to be next! I would definitely recommend it to any parent or teacher!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 3, 2007

    Wonderlful Children's Book

    This book is a joy to read to children. They learn anticipation in guessing what color the lion's tail will be the next day. One of my all time favorites.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 25, 2002

    This book is a joy to read over and over...

    My 5 year old daughter picks this book every night. The little bird cannot understand why the lion's tail is a different color everyday. The lion enjoys the bird's company even though he cannot understand her language. The illustrations and colors are amazing, while the simple flow of the story never bores a young, interested mind.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 9, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews

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