The Big Squirrel and the Little Rhinoceros

The Big Squirrel and the Little Rhinoceros

by Mischa Danjam, Hans de Beer

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
In the Land of a Thousand Shadows, the credo appears to be ``bigger is better.'' A charging rhinoceros, a roaring lion and a teeth - gnashing crocodile cause great distress for the smaller animals with whom they must live. Eager to get even with their inconsiderate neighbors, a squirrel, a mouse and a frog wish to become big. After a magical, chaotic switch, the giant squirrel has trouble climbing trees and finding a ``few hundred pounds of acorns'' to fill his newly huge belly. Meanwhile, the rhinoceros is humbled by being made small. Once the animals ``promise to be good friends,'' they return to their appropriate sizes. Although Damjan's text is somewhat didactic, the comical plot situations brighten this tale. De Beer's ( Little Polar Bear ) creatures have enormously expressive eyes that winsomely portray the dismay of their predicaments. The animals' size switch also allows for a pleasing variety of perspectives in the artwork. Youngsters will be reassured by the eventual triumph of compromise. Ages 5-8. (Sept.)
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1-- This Swiss import uses the theme of ``walk a mile in my shoes'' to teach humility. In the ``Land of a Thousand Shadows,'' a rhinoceros, a lion, and a crocodile lord their strength over smaller creatures. A squirrel topples out of a tree the rhino has whammed into; a mouse is frightened by the lion's roar; a frog loses its chance to catch a fly because of the crocodile's teeth gnashing. The three dream of becoming larger to get even with their foes; at dawn, the six main animals have magically exchanged sizes. The tiny rhino, lion, and crocodile are duly humbled, but real surprises await the now-larger creatures. By nightfall, all have agreed that a return to their original sizes and a new policy of courteous behavior make more sense. In this oversized book, each spread includes a full-page, full-color painting, plus smaller scenes. The watercolors and pen-and-ink media used by Dutch artist de Beer produce realistic scenes with expressive, sometimes whimsical, characters. A first purchase this is not, but it does succeed as a gentle tale with a message. --Jacqueline Elsner, Athens Regional Library, GA

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Product Details

North-South Books, Inc.
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
8.76(w) x 11.58(h) x 0.33(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

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