Pardon Me!
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Pardon Me!

by Daniel Miyares
     
 

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A little bird just wants some peace and quiet—but he’s about to get a whole lot more than he bargained for in this clever picture book debut, in the tradition of Jon Klassen’s I Want My Hat Back.

It’s a beautiful, sunny day in the swamp when a little yellow bird settles down on a rock—only to be interrupted as first a heron,

Overview

A little bird just wants some peace and quiet—but he’s about to get a whole lot more than he bargained for in this clever picture book debut, in the tradition of Jon Klassen’s I Want My Hat Back.

It’s a beautiful, sunny day in the swamp when a little yellow bird settles down on a rock—only to be interrupted as first a heron, then a frog, then a turtle ask to sit on the rock with him. As each animal says “pardon me,” the little bird’s replies get grumpier:

“I suppose I can’t stop you.”
“It’s already crowded, don’t you think?”
“Sure, the entire swamp’s here already. Why shouldn’t you be, too?”

When a fox comes by, the bird finally loses his cool. But it just so happens that fox showed up for a reason, and the little bird’s outburst leads to a surprise ending you’ll want to read again and again.

Editorial Reviews

The Wall Street Journal
"sumptuously illustrated"
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
On the title page, an odd-looking bird is flying into a swamp under a dark sky. On the next two wordless double pages he has settled on a circular spot above the water. Next a large white bird alights there, saying, “Pardon me.” A small bird replies, “…I can’t stop you.” The next arrival across a wordless double page, a frog, also then says, “Pardon me.” The small bird remarks that it is getting crowded. And so a turtle is added, as the bird remarks that “…the entire swamp’s here already…” As the sky brightens, a faraway fox asks to be pardoned as he tries to inform the crowd that they are sitting on a…. “Pardon me,” exclaims the bird, adding, “Now leave me alone!” The others scatter. Then, as the sky darkens over three double pages, the knockout surprise ending to this unusual story is finally revealed. The more or less naturalistic characters: frog and fox more, small bird less, are rendered in digital mixed media and drawn with comic affect. The terse text is hand lettered in upper case white letters. Changes in color and hue occur as the story progresses. Do not miss the subtle differences between the front and back end pages. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz; Ages 4 to 8.
School Library Journal
04/01/2014
PreS-Gr 2—A little yellow bird dozing on a comfortable perch in the swamp is disturbed in succession by a heron, a frog, and then a turtle, who all wish to share his spot. With each animal's arrival, the bird's response to the polite "pardon me" offered gets testier and testier ("Well, I suppose I can't stop you." and "It's crowded already, don't you think?"). Despite the bird's lack of graciousness, the four share the perch until a fox shows up on a nearby log. His "pardon me" is the last straw for the bird, who exclaims, "Well, pardon me, but this is my perch and I don't care what you have to say!" After his outburst, the heron, frog, turtle, and even the fox leave him alone. Dozing off once again the little bird is alerted to something amiss only when his perch moves. The surprise ending, for both the story and the bird, is extremely satisfying, and the last "pardon me" will have readers laughing out loud. The full-page, digitally rendered, mixed-media illustrations are richly colored and work beautifully with the spare text to tell and enhance the story. The little bird's expressions, ranging from contentment to alarm, are subtle and entertaining. A fabulous choice for storytime; pair it with Jon Klassen's I Want My Hat Back (Candlewick, 2011 ) for surefire laughs and cries to "read it again, please."—Sara-Jo Lupo Sites, George F. Johnson Memorial Library, Endicott, NY
Kirkus Reviews
2014-04-16
"The Gingerbread Boy" meets "The Mitten" in this tale of a self-centered (and doomed) protagonist squawking about an increasingly crowded setting.The digital mixed-media sky is blue, and the clouds are puffy as a yellow bird descends to a deserted dry patch of ground in the pond. The peace is short-lived; a shadow blocks the sun, and a heron descends, followed by a frog and a turtle—each uttering the titular phrase, much to the vocal and graceless annoyance of the grumpy bird. When a fox begins to speak, readers may assume this is the end—or that he is about to echo the others—but the rude protagonist sends the animals scurrying with this interruption: "WELL, PARDON ME, BUT THIS IS MY PERCH, AND I DON'T CARE WHAT YOU HAVE TO SAY!" As night falls, he achieves ultimate rest when the "land mass" rises, and the crocodile he's been sitting on has the last "pardon"—a burp. This one-trick book is entertaining enough on the first read: The contrast between the warm and cool palettes as the action ascends and descends and the twist in the final scene will hold children's interest. On rereadings, however, the soft focus, overly determined digital strokes and sarcastic patter offer little to sustain attention.For clever cautionary tales with a lingering bite, try those by Jon Scieszka, James Marshall or Jon Klassen. (Picture book. 4-7)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781442489974
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
Publication date:
06/17/2014
Pages:
40
Sales rank:
1,082,193
Product dimensions:
9.20(w) x 11.20(h) x 0.50(d)
Lexile:
AD120L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Daniel Miyares has illustrated books such as Bambino and Mr. Twain and Waking Up is Hard to Do. Pardon Me! was his first adventure as an author/illustrator, followed by Float. He earned a BFA in illustration from Ringling College of Art and Design in 2002 and has since worked for Hallmark Cards Inc. Daniel currently lives near Kansas City with his lovely wife and their two small children.

Daniel Miyares has illustrated books such as Bambino and Mr. Twain and Waking Up is Hard to Do. Pardon Me! was his first adventure as an author/illustrator, followed by Float. He earned a BFA in illustration from Ringling College of Art and Design in 2002 and has since worked for Hallmark Cards Inc. Daniel currently lives near Kansas City with his lovely wife and their two small children.

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