Tortoise Brings the Mail

Tortoise Brings the Mail

by Dee Lillegard, Jillian Lund
     
 
Because Tortoise is slow to deliver the mail, one animal after another offers to do a better job, but the successful completion of the task always depends on Tortoise.

Overview

Because Tortoise is slow to deliver the mail, one animal after another offers to do a better job, but the successful completion of the task always depends on Tortoise.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Tortoise loves his work delivering the forest mail and he's very good at it. But when Crow, Rabbit and Fox each claim they can get the letters and packages out faster, Tortoise graciously steps aside, giving up his route. The new-and-improved carriers fail miserably, however, leaving Tortoise to straighten out the chaos and make amends to his customers. Before long he's cheered all over the countryside as "the very best one" to deliver the mail. Lillegard's (Sitting in My Box) nicely paced tale offers a gentle lesson in appreciation. Her kindhearted Tortoise embodies the perseverance and steadfastness for which his kind has been recognized since Aesop's day. Lund's (Way Out West Lives a Coyote Named Frank) perky paintings brim with such playful details as inventively designed mailboxes and alliterative or otherwise catchy animal names and addresses (e.g., Beaver, D.D.S., and Doe A. Deer). But her characters' overly anthropomorphic expressions and frequently vacant smiles often render her paintings more bland than amusing. Mailman fans will also want to keep in mind Bernadette Watts's Harvey Hare, Postman Extraordinaire (Children's Forecasts, Jan. 20). Ages 3-6. (Apr.)
Publishers Weekly - Cahners\\Publishers_Weekly
Tortoise loves his work delivering the forest mail and he's very good at it. But when Crow, Rabbit and Fox each claim they can get the letters and packages out faster, Tortoise graciously steps aside, giving up his route. The new-and-improved carriers fail miserably, however, leaving Tortoise to straighten out the chaos and make amends to his customers. Before long he's cheered all over the countryside as "the very best one" to deliver the mail. Lillegard's (Sitting in My Box) nicely paced tale offers a gentle lesson in appreciation. Her kindhearted Tortoise embodies the perseverance and steadfastness for which his kind has been recognized since Aesop's day. Lund's (Way Out West Lives a Coyote Named Frank) perky paintings brim with such playful details as inventively designed mailboxes and alliterative or otherwise catchy animal names and addresses (e.g., Beaver, D.D.S., and Doe A. Deer). But her characters' overly anthropomorphic expressions and frequently vacant smiles often render her paintings more bland than amusing. Mailman fans will also want to keep in mind Bernadette Watts's Harvey Hare, Postman Extraordinaire (Children's Forecasts, Jan. 20).
Children's Literature - Janet Morgan Stoeke
Poor Tortoise! He loves his job, but the animals in the forest keep trying out faster mail carriers. Crow is speedy but careless, and drops letters in all the wrong places. Rabbit goes so fast, he doesn't read the addresses or mailboxes properly. And Fox, the worst yet, steals packages that smell tempting. But no one catches Fox at his sneaky thievery except Tortoise, who assumes he has simply gotten behind in his work. Tortoise kindly delivers the stash, and then tells Fox he's doing a great job. Fox is sure that Tortoise is on to him, even though he isn't, and sneaks off in the night. All the other animals somehow know more than Tortoise, and declare him to be the very best one to deliver the mail. Colorful and sweet, the gouache illustrations are an appropriate backdrop for this simple story. The stylization is at its best in the stamps that decorate the cover. One almost wants the artist to move further in that direction in the body of the book, which would relieve the story of its occasionally too-sweet feel.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2The importance of honesty, reliability, modesty, accuracy, and kindness is subtly brought out in this story of a cheerful tortoise who loves his job as mail carrier to the forest creatures. But he moves too slowly for their tastes. Willingly, he cedes his responsibility to three swifter animals. Crow, however, drops letters everywhere, Rabbit puts mail in the wrong boxes, and Fox keeps all the good packages for himself. Each time Tortoise follows behind them, happily correcting their errors, and soon all realize that he is the best one for the job. The handsome format has a decorative, clear typeface and a variety of artistic, bold, bright full- and half-page illustrations. The simple, crisply outlined, expressive figures and clever touches of humor add zest and charm to the relaxed easy-to-read text.Patricia Pearl Dole, formerly at First Presbyterian School, Martinsville, VA
Kirkus Reviews
Tortoise loves delivering the mail. He's friendly and dependable, but speed has never been his strong point. Boastful Crow thinks he can do the job faster, and Tortoise graciously bows out: "Delivering the mail is very important. Let the very best one do it." Crow drops the mail all over the countryside, so Rabbit tries the job next; he's in such a hurry he doesn't bother to read the addresses. Fox steps in. He's fast and smart—maybe too smart: He smells every package and keeps what he wants for himself. Everyone finally recognizes that Tortoise is the best candidate for the job, and so good-hearted perseverance and pride in a job well done win out over flashy boastfulness. It's a worthy message, delivered with zeal, although the outcome is never in question. Lund's bold line-and-watercolor illustrations spice up the story with humor: Crow looks like a pompous orator gesturing with his wings; Penelope Porcupine's mailbox bristles with spikes; and B.A. Bunny has a carrot-shaped nameplate.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780525451563
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
04/01/1997
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.81(w) x 10.33(h) x 0.44(d)
Age Range:
3 - 6 Years

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