Perfect Purple Feather

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Overview

In this unusual picture book, a magical purple feather takes readers on an imaginative journey. As the feather travels through the pages of the book, it becomes a whisker for a cat, a quill for a porcupine, and a tail for a dog. A real purple feather inserted in the back of the book makes the ending especially surprising and satisfying. Created out of everyday objects suck as pickles, forks, buttons, and ice-cream cones, Piven's illustrations will amaze readers young and old.

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Overview

In this unusual picture book, a magical purple feather takes readers on an imaginative journey. As the feather travels through the pages of the book, it becomes a whisker for a cat, a quill for a porcupine, and a tail for a dog. A real purple feather inserted in the back of the book makes the ending especially surprising and satisfying. Created out of everyday objects suck as pickles, forks, buttons, and ice-cream cones, Piven's illustrations will amaze readers young and old.

Author Biography: Hanoch Piven's award-winning portraits have appeared in Time, Rolling Stone, and Entertainment Weekly. This, his first book, was originally published in Israel, where it was a number-one bestseller.

Rhyming text and illustrations take the reader on a journey, in which a simple purple feather becomes a whisker for a cat, a pen for an owl, a quill for a porcupine, and more.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Fanciful animals made of found objects make newcomer Piven's photo-story, first published in Israel, a visual standout. Simple rhyming text describes what happens when Jacob, in bed for the night, discovers a purple feather poking up from the mattress. Immediately, a series of animals begins arguing over the attractive object. "I'm missing a wing just look at me!" cries a bluebird made of scissors and a banana painted blue, "Please give me that feather you hold in your hand,/ So I can fly in a flash to a faraway land." In some portraits, the components take on clever meaning: a porcupine made of nails wants the feather in order to appear "soft and so sweet / I could charm anyone I happened to meet," an owl composed of computer parts claims the feather as a "fine pen for my ink." Other animals further the modest story line: a doggy needs the feather for a tail; on the next spread a tiger threatens, "That feather will make a fine toothpick to munch / After I've eaten that doggy for lunch." An elephant's sneeze (her trunk is inventively fashioned from a curving iron pipe, which straightens on the next spread as she ah-choos) sends the feather "[twirling] and [swirling] through the dark-blue night sky," high above the heads of a silhouetted Jacob and his supporting cast. An envelope on the final page holds a purple feather. These animal constructions will keep kids returning again and again, long after the purple feather has been carried away. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)
Children's Literature
Sleepy Jacob imagines his purple feather floating away and becoming much more than its simple self. In his vibrant imagination, the feather becomes a tiger's toothpick, the whisker of a cat, the hair on a centipede, and a tickle from a tick. The feather soars and changes into many more uses and Jacob becomes increasingly sleepy. Ultimately, he falls asleep, the feather sails away and lands in the book—a real purple feather for the reader to use, enjoy, and experience. All of the text is in rhyme and the illustrations are photographs of three-dimensional collages. The elephant in the story is crafted from old pipes, steel wool pads, and a thimble. The porcupine is made of nails, a tape dispenser, and a wiggly eye. Readers will love the creativity of the collages and be inspired to try some of their own. This is a wonderful story for an art teacher to share before a collage project, or for a reading teacher to present before a creative writing or rhyming assignment. It is also perfect for the reader who is in need of an adventure of the imagination. Enjoy the ride. 2002, Little, Brown and Company,
— Andrea Sears Andrews
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2-Feeling a poke from within his pillow during the night, Jacob maneuvers a fluffy purple feather to the surface. Beginning with a bluebird in a nearby tree, various animals explain how they would put it to good use-as a wing, a pen, a tail, etc. When a tick tickles an elephant's nose with it, the elephant sneezes, causing the feather to fly through the sky, suggesting the possibility that it may land in the reader's bedroom. The last page has an envelope containing a purple feather. Young children will enjoy the jaunty verse and the animals' imaginative uses for the plume. The large, colorful illustrations, composed mostly of realia used in unexpected ways, are reminiscent of those in Joan Steiner's Look-Alikes (Little, Brown, 1998). A porcupine, for example, has a body made of nails and a head made of a tape dispenser, while the bluebird has scissors for a head and forks for legs. Children will delight in naming the objects that make up the animals' body parts. This perfect blend of sight and sound is certain to tickle the funny bone, whether shared in a group or one-on-one.-Lynda Ritterman, Atco Elementary School, Waterford, NJ Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
The intriguing cover of a bluebird composed of scissors forming head and beak, two fish forks serving as legs that support an intensely blue painted banana that makes the body, grabs attention and stages the visual game here. A feather poking him in the head awakens a boy. In rhyme, various creatures want the feather each for a different use: the bluebird needs it for a wing; the catty cat to look chic; the ant for a boat sail; an owl for a pen. After a porcupine, centipede, dog, and tiger, last is a tick that uses the feather to tickle an elephant’s nose, which sneezes the feather out into the night. The photographs of three-dimensional collages created from found objects are playful: the centipede body’s a wooden comb; the owl is made up of computer motherboards; many tools and metal objects form the critters. Originally published in Israel, the story provides the vehicle for the creative artwork. The lines of text in different colors contrast with the dark backgrounds. The gimmick that wraps it up is a purple feather that is enclosed in an envelope inside the book, inviting children to follow their feather on a journey that is bound to tickle their curiosity. (Picture book. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316766579
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 9/1/2002
  • Edition description: 1ST ENG.
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.82 (w) x 11.34 (h) x 0.39 (d)

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 1, 2002

    Was Chicken Little a Neurotic?

    Fabulous articulation in user friendly format(s). All books should follow the rules set forth by Author Hanoch Piven.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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