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Little Elephants
     

Little Elephants

4.0 1
by Graeme Base
 

One little boy living on a farm in rural Texas gets a big surprise when he discovers tiny flying elephants under his bed. But his mom doesn’t like critters in the house, so he tries to keep them a secret. Until one day they escape from his bedroom and cause havoc in the house. But when locusts invade the farm and start to destroy crops, the elephants come to

Overview

One little boy living on a farm in rural Texas gets a big surprise when he discovers tiny flying elephants under his bed. But his mom doesn’t like critters in the house, so he tries to keep them a secret. Until one day they escape from his bedroom and cause havoc in the house. But when locusts invade the farm and start to destroy crops, the elephants come to the rescue!
Bestselling author-illustrator Graeme Base has created a unique story with his signature illustrations, which are sure to appeal to young readers.

Praise for Little Elephants
"The minimal text wisely recedes for Base's gorgeous paintings, and the story's very implausibility is a large part of the delight... An offbeat and winning mix of earthiness and enchantment."
Kirkus Reviews

"This is a strange, magical book. Base’s lush paintings ground the fanciful story in its realistic rural setting. At the same time, the landscapes are suffused with a golden glow that casts a soporific charm over the whole book. Interesting visual details abound, from the mouse’s thimble helmet to the prophetic circus posters on the walls. A great book to enjoy one-on-one."
School Library Journal

"Graeme Base has done it again. His beautifully detailed paintings are such an important part of this story."
Library Media Connection

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Base (Animalia) sets this magical tale in a threatened farm belt, alluding to the American Dust Bowl era and The Wizard of Oz. Jim, an earnest boy in blue overalls, lives with his anxious mother “on a wheat farm, and the risk of plague was never far away.” Fearing that pests will spoil the crop, Jim sadly frees his pet mouse. Later, though, a top-hatted traveler promises Jim “good fortune” and leaves behind a red megaphone; when Jim blows into this horn, he hears “a faraway trumpeting sound.... A shimmering cloud of gray dust wafted away on the breeze.” That night, Jim’s mouse returns, along with happy herd of rabbit-size elephants. Together, the animals bravely battle locusts to save the harvest. Base scatters visual hints throughout the narrative: model biplanes and a photo of a uniformed man suggest Jim’s absent father, and elephant and circus images hint at the origins of the mini-pachyderms. Base’s portraits of human beings can be awkward, but his tiny elephants—who run amok like the bullfrogs in David Wiesner’s Tuesday—are captivating. Ages 4–8. (Sept.)
School Library Journal
PreS-2—Little Elephants defies logic in all of the best ways. Jim and his mother live alone on a struggling wheat farm. When he catches a mouse and wants to keep it as a pet, his mom explains that "one mouse will attract others …we just can't chance it." Times are already tough for the little family; with the harvester broken and a swarm of locusts on the way, things look grim for the farm. After a chance encounter with a mysterious stranger, however, Jim is surprised to see that his mouse has returned, and it's not alone. A swarm of tiny elephants has invaded the house. They go for a joyride on Jim's toy trucks before sprouting wings, defeating the locusts, and bringing in the harvest ("two ears at a time"). This is a strange, magical book. Base's lush paintings ground the fanciful story in its realistic rural setting. At the same time, the landscapes are suffused with a golden glow that casts a soporific charm over the whole book. Interesting visual details abound, from the mouse's thimble helmet to the prophetic circus posters on the walls. A great book to enjoy one-on-one.—Rachael Vilmar, Eastern Shore Regional Library, Salisbury, MD
Kirkus Reviews
A magical mouse helps young Jim save the family farm. It's harvest time on the wheat farm, and Jim's mother gently explains to him that he can't keep the white mouse he's found because it could attract others. The risk to the harvest is too great. Jim walks far from the farmhouse to let little Pipsqueak go. The next day in the field, Jim encounters a strange man wearing a jaunty hat who predicts that the wind will bring good fortune--but on the radio that night there's news of a swarm of destructive locusts heading in their direction. Later, Jim gets a surprise: Pipsqueak has found his way back, and he has brought something special. Under the bed, Jim finds a herd of tiny elephants. He tries to keep them a secret, but one night they escape and wreak all kinds of lovingly illustrated havoc. At the very moment Jim's mother notes the damage and figures they have a mouse problem, the locusts attack! Not to worry: The tiny and suddenly winged elephants drive the deadly locusts away and bring in the harvest to boot..."two ears at a time." The minimal text wisely recedes for Base's gorgeous paintings, and the story's very implausibility is a large part of the delight. An offbeat and winning mix of earthiness and enchantment. (Picture book. 4-7)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781419704635
Publisher:
Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
Publication date:
09/01/2012
Pages:
40
Sales rank:
526,510
Product dimensions:
11.30(w) x 11.20(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
5 - 7 Years

Meet the Author

Graeme Base received international acclaim for his smash hit Animalia, which has sold more than 2 million copies. Among his many other beloved and bestselling books are Enigma, The Eleventh Hour, The Water Hole, and The Legend of the Golden Snail. He lives with his family in Melbourne, Australia.

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Little Elephants 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Graeme Base fans will enjoy the illustrations that include some of his previous books. There is a subtle sense of humor in the pictures of this title. I was a little disappointed there was nothing to look for on the full page spreads like so many of his other books. Still a 'magical' feeling story and intricate, detailed artwork.