Seven Blind Mice

( 9 )

Overview

"It's a pillar," says one. "It's a fan," says another. One by one, the seven blind mice investigate the strange Something by the pond. And one by one, they come back with a different theory. It's only when the seventh mouse goes out-and explores the whole Something-that the mice see the whole truth. Based on a classic Indian tale, Ed Young's beautifully rendered version is a treasure to enjoy again and again.

"Immensely appealing." (The Horn Book, starred review)

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Overview

"It's a pillar," says one. "It's a fan," says another. One by one, the seven blind mice investigate the strange Something by the pond. And one by one, they come back with a different theory. It's only when the seventh mouse goes out-and explores the whole Something-that the mice see the whole truth. Based on a classic Indian tale, Ed Young's beautifully rendered version is a treasure to enjoy again and again.

"Immensely appealing." (The Horn Book, starred review)

In this retelling of the Indian fable, seven blind mice discover different parts of an elephant and argue about its appearance.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In a stunning celebration of color Caldecott medalist Young ( Lon Po Po ) offers a vibrant variation on the fable of the blind men trying to identify an elephant. Seven differently-hued blind mice approach the ``strange Something'' in their midst on successive days and report their findings to the group. A large black square provides the background for each painting, a dramatic contrast to the brilliant images ``felt'' by the sightless rodents. Young's textured, cut-paper illustrations allow readers to visualize just how a floppy ear might be mistaken for a fan (``I felt it move!''); the elephant's curving trunk springs to life as both a jewel-green snake and a glowing yellow spear. The spare text permits greater exploration and enjoyment of the artwork--it may be difficult to read the story straight through without stopping to compare the various images. The ``Mouse Moral'' that concludes the tale--``Knowing in part may make a fine tale, but wisdom comes from seeing the whole''--may seem superfluous to those who prefer the imaginative ``vision'' of the mice. Ages 4-up. (Apr.)
Children's Literature - Joan Kindig
In Seven Blind Mice, Ed Young offers a fable from India about understanding something only when you know the whole if it. Seven blind mice encounter an elephant by their pond and one by one they explore the beast to find out what it is. Day by day, each mouse goes forth and comes back with an idea as to what it is. On Monday, the red mouse feels the elephant's sturdy leg and surmises that it is a pillar. On Tuesday, the second mouse, the green one, encounters the elephant's trunk and reports that it is a snake. Similarly, the yellow mouse misidentifies the elephant's tusk as a spear. After six mice have gone, the white mouse runs over the entire elephant and realizes by feeling the entire animal that it is an elephant. In this 1993 Caldecott Honor book, Young incorporates colors of the rainbow, counting, and days of the week as well as the moral that the fable provides. Exquisitely done, Young's cut paper illustrations give life to this age-old tale. The scampering mice transfer well to the screen, B.D. Wong's narration is pitch perfect, and the mice are each endowed with their own singular personalities. An interview with author/illustrator Ed Young rounds out this DVD as he discusses how the concept for this book developed. This DVD is ideal for classroom use and for children's literature enthusiasts. Running time: 7 minutes. Reviewer: Joan Kindig, Ph.D.
Children's Literature - Debra Briatico
In this ancient fable seven blind mice find something mysterious by a pond. One by one, they investigate the "thing" and make their own guesses as to its identity. Only the seventh mouse sees the whole truth and solves the big mystery. This animal fable teaches a great lesson about wisdom and the need to look at the whole instead of getting lost in the parts. Young readers will enjoy the stunning paper-collage illustrations that can also be used to help youngsters explore the concepts of color, days of the week and ordinal numbers.
Children's Literature - Susie Wilde
Young is one of the finest Asian artists in the children's book field. He reveals his understanding of children in Seven Blind Mice, a Caldecott runner-up. He provides visual delight with strong watercolors and imaginative collage. As he recreates the classic tale of the seven blind men, he serves younger children with weaving concepts of colors, numbers and days of the week. The truths of the book and its theme of limited vision, speak best to older children.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3-- A real winner, on many levels. The first impression is visual delight. Brilliant colors and varied textures of paper collage are placed in striking contrast against velvety black pages. Bold white lettering imposed on the dark background tells of seven blind mice, seen in seven bright colors. Over the course of a week each investigates, in turn, the strange ``Something'' it encounters. To one it is a pillar, to another a snake, to another a cliff. Finally, on the seventh day, the white mouse, running across the thing and remembering what the others found, concludes that it is an elephant. The tale ends with the moral that wisdom comes from seeing ``the whole.'' Adapting the old fable of the blind men and the elephant by weaving in the days of the week, the mice, and the beautiful shapes of the things they see, Young gives children a clever story, wise words, and a truly exciting visual experience.-- Shirley Wilton, Ocean County College, Toms River, NJ
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780698118959
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 6/28/2002
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 82,414
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.02 (w) x 10.93 (h) x 0.12 (d)

Meet the Author

Caldecott medalist Ed Young was born in Tientsin, China, and brought up in Shanghai. He cites the philosophy of Chinese painting as an inspiration for much of his work. "A Chinese painting is often accompanied by words," he explains; "they are complementary. There are things that words do that pictures never can, and likewise, there are images that words can never describe."

Mr. Young has been illustrating children's books for more than twenty years and has won many awards. He received the 1990 Caldecott Medal for his book Lon Po Po, and his much-lauded collaboration with anthologist Nancy Larrick, Cats Are Cats, was named one of the Ten Best Illustrated Books of 1988 by The New York Times.

Mr. Young studied at the University of Illinois, the Art Center of Los Angeles, and Pratt Institute in New York City. He and his family live in Hastings-on-Hudson, New York.

copyright 2000 by Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers. All rights reserved.
Caldecott medalist Ed Young was born in Tientsin, China, and brought up in Shanghai. He cites the philosophy of Chinese painting as an inspiration for much of his work. "A Chinese painting is often accompanied by words," he explains; "they are complementary. There are things that words do that pictures never can, and likewise, there are images that words can never describe."

Mr. Young has been illustrating children's books for more than twenty years and has won many awards. He received the 1990 Caldecott Medal for his book Lon Po Po, and his much-lauded collaboration with anthologist Nancy Larrick, Cats Are Cats, was named one of the Ten Best Illustrated Books of 1988 by The New York Times.

Mr. Young studied at the University of Illinois, the Art Center of Los Angeles, and Pratt Institute in New York City. He and his family live in Hastings-on-Hudson, New York.

copyright 2000 by Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers. All rights reserved.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 9 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 25, 2006

    Not just for kids!

    I'm a coordinator of staff development activities for nurses, and I was able to use this book to introduce to our nurse leaders how we all need to work together to see the big picture. It may be a children's book, but it can definitely apply to adults in the work setting!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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

    Posted July 15, 2013

    A great take on an old tale. Instead of blind scholars, blind mi

    A great take on an old tale. Instead of blind scholars, blind mice investigate the unknown object and each have a different take on what 
    it is until finally the last mouse knows. This is a must see the picture book as a good deal of the story is in the pictures. Great to teach 
    colors and compare animal parts to other things, like walls and rope. For a little older children it teaches about finding out all the facts
    before coming to a conclusion.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 14, 2011

    Every preschool should have a copy!

    Seven blind Mice by Ed Young is without a doubt a must have in any preschool or daycare facility. It starts when seven blind mice explore different parts of an elephant's (an animal that all toddlers-preschoolers know and are fascinated about) body parts but since they are blind they have a hard time guessing what each part is. As they go and explore each part of the elephant they draw conclusions as to what that part is. With this book children are exposed to concepts such as colors, days of the week and the basic parts of an elephant. As each colored mice explores the elephant on different days of the week. The last mice explore the elephant as whole and let the other know what it is. On the last pages of the book it gives a moral that makes you go Aw. and lets you understand the whole book.

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  • Posted February 11, 2010

    An Important Lesson

    This book brings home a very good lesson to young kids. I remember when i was younger that this was my favorite book. The characters are a good choice and ironic because of the message that is put across. This is a book to read every now and then to remind you to look at the big picture because in today's society we can get sucked in and have tunnel vision. I would read this to my future family.

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

    Posted September 26, 2006

    Seven Blind Mice Review

    Caldecott: Seven Blind Mice, was a very entertaining book. It kept me guessing what the mice had found. It is a good book for children to use their imaginations. You could do different activities to go along with the story that the children could create. I liked this book. Ed Young, winner of the 1990 Caldecott Medal, has illustrated over 40 books for children, four of which he has also written.He cites the philosophy of Chinese painting as his inspiration. ¿A Chinese painting is often accompanied by words,¿ explainsYoung. ¿They are complementary. There are things that words do that pictures never can, and likewise, there are images thatwords can never describe.¿ Ed Young was born in Tienstin, China. He grew up in Shanghai and later moved to Hong Kong. He came to the United Statesas a young man on a student visa. A graduate of the Los Angeles Art Center, Young has since taught at the Pratt Institute, YaleUniversity, Naropa Institute, and the University of California at Santa Cruz. He currently lives with his wife inHastings-on-Hudson, New York. The book, Seven Blind Mice, is about seven blind mice. They go walking through the field and find something one day. Each mouse goes a different day to try to figure out what it is. Each mouse thinks it is something different from the other mice. 6 of the mice go and they argue about what they have found. But, when the 7th mouse goes then they discover what it really is. In a way all the mice was correct in their guesses. ¿One day seven blind mice were surprised to find a strange Something by their pond. What is it? They cried, and they all ran home¿. This is the part of the story where they discover the ¿thing¿ in the field. ¿On Tuesday, Green Mouse set out. He was the second to go. It¿s a snake, he said¿. This is the second day that the mice try to figure out what the ¿thing¿ was. Young, Ed. Seven Blind Mice. New York: Scholastic Inc., 1992. Grade Level: 1st

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

    Posted July 11, 2005

    Seven Blind Mice

    This was an assigned reading for a children's literature class that I am taking. This would be a woderful book to aid in teaching days of the week, colors, and counting. It would be fun to use to get the children to think about what they would think a item is if they could not see the item.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2001

    Seven Blind Mice

    Seven Blind Mice is an excellent story about seven mice that are blind they are called Red, Green, Yellow, Purple, Orange, Blue, and Gray.They find something and didn¿t what it is.Each mouse takes it¿s turn to guess what it is. I like how they all use their imagination. I think is an incredible by how they try to find out what it is.It¿s a nice book to make you happy

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 12, 2000

    Excellent Childs Book!!!

    My daughter spent endless hours reading this book and looking at the illustrations. This is a must have for all at home libraries!!

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

    Posted January 13, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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