The Tortoise and the Hare

Overview

A classic reenvisioned and retold by Bernadette Watts—one of Europe’s most recognized and beloved fairy-tale artists! When Tortoise says to Hare, “I bet I can beat you in a running race!” everyone laughs. Tortoise puts one foot in front of the next. Hare stops to nibble carrot tops and cabbages. . . . Who will have the last laugh? “The Hare and the Tortoise” has been a favorite with generations of children around the world. Bernadette Watts’s lovable animals and sumptuous settings bring great warmth and charm to ...

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Overview

A classic reenvisioned and retold by Bernadette Watts—one of Europe’s most recognized and beloved fairy-tale artists! When Tortoise says to Hare, “I bet I can beat you in a running race!” everyone laughs. Tortoise puts one foot in front of the next. Hare stops to nibble carrot tops and cabbages. . . . Who will have the last laugh? “The Hare and the Tortoise” has been a favorite with generations of children around the world. Bernadette Watts’s lovable animals and sumptuous settings bring great warmth and charm to this timeless tale. Little listeners will celebrate anew with all the animals at the finish line!

Recounts in simple dialogue the famous tale of the race between the persevering tortoise and the boastful hare.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"'The Tortoise and the Hare' is a fresh retelling of the old Aesop Fable so much beloved by past generations of young readers."- Midwest Book Review
School Library Journal
03/01/2015
PreS-Gr 2—Watts's elaborate detail draws out the familiar story into a full-fledged picture book with few changes to the basic tale. After picnicking under a tree in a meadow, the animals "enjoyed games and races," prompting Tortoise to challenge Hare to a circular running race beginning and ending at the picnic tree. Hare takes the lead, stopping at a cottage garden to stuff himself with some tasty vegetables and fallen apples, followed up with a long drink at a nearby stream, a conversation with his friend Mr. Fox, and a rest under a sweet-smelling honeysuckle hedge. When Hare awakens to the sound of cheering animals, he races across the meadow to find that Tortoise has already won. Leaving just enough white space to soothe the eyes, Watts has filled much of each page with finely detailed meadow grasses, bushes, trees, and wildflowers and an assortment of dear, tiny animals, birds, and insects and their homes for children to find and treasure. The story begins with a morning scene featuring a beaming yellow sun and ends with a slumbering slice of the moon in a starry nighttime sky. Picnic scenes show cakes, cupcakes, and a tea set; squirrel and mole playing tennis; hedgehog reading a picture book to little hedgehog, rabbit, and bird. Tiny clothes dry on a clothesline, and mouse holds a parasol to avoid the sun's rays. VERDICT A pleasant retelling, best shared one-on-one.—Susan Scheps, formerly at Shaker Public Library, OH
Children's Literature - Debra Briatico
Designed for beginning readers, this "Ready-to-Read" book uses simple, repetitive language and colorful, witty illustrations to recount the popular tale about the race between a slow, steady turtle and a fast, boastful rabbit. This predictable story not only introduces youngsters to clever characters and a funny plot, but it also teaches a valuable lesson about perseverance.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 1Miles's introduction informs parents that "old stories" are good for new readers because of their use of familiar story lines and repetitive words. The author then uses these techniques in her retelling of this classic Aesop fable, using only dialogue, keeping the words to a minimum, and repeating certain phrases throughout. While the tale itself remains unchanged, this version has a modern bent to it, expressed primarily through the cartoon illustrations. All of the animals are dressed in colorful clothing, except for Tortoise, who wears nothing but his shell and a pair of sneakers. They all sport letters on their chests Tortoise wears a `T,' Hare an `H,' and Bear a `B" except for Fox, who has his whole name on his shirt. These cleverly placed clues will help children remember what letter each animal's name starts with. Amusing details include Tortoise's little round glasses perched on the end of his nose and the banners that cheer on the racers. A great choice for beginning readers to tackle on their own.Dina Sherman, Brooklyn Children's Museum, NY
Kirkus Reviews
The well-known fable is economized in a Ready-to-Read edition from Miles (see review, above); the events of the race now take place entirely in dialogue, sometimes in a Dick-and-Jane staccato. Quotation marks and speech bubbles have been abandoned in favor of brief blocks of text placed in proximity to each animal speaker. Once the race begins, it's not long before Hare settles into a nap; a night and a day later, bespectacled, sneaker-wearing Tortoise is still plodding along, slow but steady, coaching himself—"One step, another step. One step and another" until he takes first place. Meisel's whimsical, uncluttered line drawings fit the format well, bright enough to attract attention and to express action. Larger animal characters sport T-shirts with identifying letters—H for Hare, B for Bear—while a cheering section of smaller creatures displays banners proclaiming "Yippee" and "Hooray," highlighting the tale with humor. (Picture book. 5-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780735842076
  • Publisher: North-South Books, Inc.
  • Publication date: 3/1/2015
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 365,318
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD610L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.70 (w) x 11.20 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Bernadette Wattshas illustrated many well-reviewed books for children. She illustrates classic fairy tales, such as “The Three Little Pigs,” and writes original stories, including “Will You Be My Friend.” Watts created her first picture book under the influence of Beatrix Potter and studied at the Maidstone Art School in Kent, UK.

Aesop, according to Herodotus, lived around the sixth century BC on Samos. He is regarded as the founding father of fables. Today Aesop’s fables are representative of a particular narrative form with truthful morals or moral content.

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