Rules of the Wild: An Unruly Book of Manners

Overview

Playing in the dirt, staying up all night, and leaving clothes strewn across the floor are not a problem if you're a wild animal. Dunking food, burping, and splashing?no problem either. Human kids, who are expected to follow rules, rules, rules, will squeal with delight as the pages reveal wild animals getting away with all kinds of outlandish behavior and will relish "knowing better!"

Rhyming text explores how proper behavior for young animals is different from ...

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Overview

Playing in the dirt, staying up all night, and leaving clothes strewn across the floor are not a problem if you're a wild animal. Dunking food, burping, and splashing—no problem either. Human kids, who are expected to follow rules, rules, rules, will squeal with delight as the pages reveal wild animals getting away with all kinds of outlandish behavior and will relish "knowing better!"

Rhyming text explores how proper behavior for young animals is different from what is expected of young children.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Newcomers Levin and Shepherd propose that polite behavior might be different in the animal kingdom. "If your mom had a tail/ or your father a mane,/ the rules of your house/ might not be such a pain," announces the text while Shepherd pictures an expressive lion with an exaggerated nose partially crossing out the "don'ts" on a list of house rules ("eat whatever you'd like./ stay up all night," etc.). A child with an oversize ovoid head and spindly limbs enthusiastically roars with the lion, splashes with a dolphin and spits with a camel-all without being scolded. With animal faces drawn in a style reminiscent of Ed Emberley's how-to cartoon books, the creatures romp together, loudly burping, squirting water and the like, and the book includes a comical yes/no chart that asks readers to match appropriate behaviors to each animal (or child). While the overall concept is a clever way to introduce toddlers to basic house rules, the rhyme at times feels forced and the rhythm of the text irregular or too linguistically complex for the audience who would most enjoy the pictures. Page breaks eliminate the repetition of the subjective "would" making the text sound ungrammatical even when it isn't (e.g., "Father Fruit Bat declare, `You can stay up all night' "). Nonetheless, young readers tired of obeying rules may find this silly walk on the wild side of animal behavior just impudent enough to suit their fancy. Ages 3-8. (Sept.) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-This clever, well-executed book will grab children's attention and make them laugh. By showing examples of inappropriate behavior for humans that is natural for wild animals, readers are left to draw their own conclusions. And they will. For example, camels spit but polite people don't. Lions roar, but people who do the same are considered rude. Shepherd's illustrations are witty and expressive, and add lots of extra details to the text. The final spread features an illustrated chart that lists behaviors (Are you allowed to-?) down the left side, and headshots of animals and a child across the top, with each matrix filled in with a "YES" or "NO." This book, about a somewhat neglected topic, is a charmer for all libraries that serve children-or wild animals. A great read-aloud for one or many.-Mary Hazelton, Warren Community School, ME Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
"Eat whatever you like" or "You can stay up all night." With a pig for a mother, or a fruit bat father, these rules might apply, and in this appealing offering by first-time author and illustrator, children get a chance to live like animals. They'll have a good time doing it, too. In Shepherd's humorous full-bleed spreads, rendered in oil and gesso on paper, Mother Piggy smiles approvingly as a boy balances over his head 18 arcing scoops on an ice cream cone. On the next spread, he prances in pajamas under the light of the moon, while his nocturnal parents, hanging from a tree, watch with wide eyes. A clever chart is included at the end, asking, "Are you allowed to . . . " Animal faces line the top; alternative question endings (". . . burp out loud?"; ". . . dunk food in your drink?") run down the side and the yes and no answers tell all. Lessons with levity. (Picture book. 3-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780811842266
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books LLC
  • Publication date: 8/5/2004
  • Pages: 36
  • Age range: 1 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Bridget Levin thinks that animals have the right ideas about rules. She loves to watch them at the zoo near her home in Minnesota. This is her first book for children.

Amanda Shepherd lives in Arizona with her husband and Kate the Kat. This is her first book for children.

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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 26, 2014

    Does not actually help children to leaen about manners. A book o

    Does not actually help children to leaen about manners. A book of rhymes and funny illustrations, not education.  Makes manners seem bad.

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

    Posted February 15, 2005

    'Rules of the Wild' absolutely RULES!

    A super silly read for children and adults! My son and I laughed out loud as we read the rhyming text and took in the magnificent illustrations! This book is a great tool for teaching about manners and animal traits. A child's imagination can 'go wild' as he reads this book alone, with classmates, or with family!

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

    Posted February 7, 2005

    We just want to roar too!

    Reading Rules of the Wild to my first graders was an uproarious experience. They giggled and laughed throughout the book indicating living in the animal world would be sublime. The text opened the door for a lively discussion on who makes the rules for children and why?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2005

    DON'T MISS 'RULES'

    Levin's fun filled book speaks to the heart of childhood as she contrasts life as a child of laid-back animal parents versus the reality of human family rules. Kids will beg to re-read this 'wild' and funny depiction of do's and don'ts. The chart in the back is not to be missed.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews

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