Wait! I Want to Tell You a Story

( 3 )


"I'm going to eat

you, little muskrat,"

said the tiger.

"Wait!" said the muskrat.

"I want to tell you a story."

"Okay," said the ...

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"I'm going to eat

you, little muskrat,"

said the tiger.

"Wait!" said the muskrat.

"I want to tell you a story."

"Okay," said the tiger,

"but make it quick!"

Clever muskrat!

He knows just how to outwit a very hungry tiger: tell him a story.

Silly tiger!

Tigers shouldn't listen to muskrats and their stories...especially clever muskrats with clever stories.

Tom Willans creates a delightful read-aloud to complement his quirkily rendered animals. The surprise ending will have children laughing and asking for the story to be read again and again.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
A clever muskrat puts off a tiger who is about to eat him with the promise of a story. "Make it quick," he is warned. He begins with a shark about to eat a frog. "Wait!" says the frog, promising a story, and warned to make it quick. A lizard similarly postpones his fate with a hungry snake, but a fly cannot persuade a spider, who eats him. The impatient tiger prepares to do the same with the muskrat, who cries "Wait!" one more time, and puts a surprising happy ending to his tale—happy, that is, only for the muskrat and a passing alligator. Do not miss the back end-papers. Visualized in very sketchy black ink outlines and watercolor washes set on the blank white pages, the illustrations have the effect of an amusing shaggy dog story. The characters are barely recognizable having been abstracted to their fundamental shapes; the muskrat could be any sort of quadruped. The tiger is the visual star, confronted by the muskrat on the jacket cover as he has his bib, knife and fork ready. But it is all in verbal and visual fun. 2005 (orig. 2004), Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers/Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing Division, Ages 3 to 7.
—Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
K-Gr 4-Willans borrows the old campfire chestnut of an endless chain story, adding his own punch line that will tickle the funny bones of many a reader. The book opens with, "Once there was a muskrat sitting quietly in a tree." Along comes a tiger who wants to eat him, but the smaller creature's quick thinking fends off the large orange beast. Muskrat says, "Wait! I want to tell you a story." His repetitive yarn tells of a series of other animals in the same predicament. A frog about to be eaten by a shark tells the tale of a lizard about to be eaten by a snake, etc. Eventually a predator gets wise. "`I don't want to hear it!' said the spider. And the spider ate the fly." Tiger then steps in to pounce on muskrat. "`Wait!' shouted the muskrat. `There's more-.'" In the silly denouement, the tiger gets his just deserts. The simple text and energetic, loose-line drawings with watercolor washes proffer a fun read-aloud that's bound to tempt some listeners to share the joke with someone else-perhaps in long succession.-Margaret Bush, Simmons College, Boston Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780689871665
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
  • Publication date: 4/28/2005
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 4 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.00 (w) x 13.44 (h) x 0.82 (d)

Meet the Author

Tom Willans was born in St. Albans, England, in 1975. After attending Verulam School, Tom achieved a B.A. degree in graphics and illustration at Bath University. His first job in publishing was as a designer and paper engineer with David Bennett Books, where he helped create many ingenious pop-up books. He continues to work in publishing and is currently on stage in Two Planks and a Passion, a play by the acclaimed movie director Anthony Minghella. This is Tom's first book for children.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 3 )
Rating Distribution

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2008

    it's a great book for little kids

    I want to point out that this is really great book. The story is amusing, but it also includes a moral lesson - it illustrates how being able to think quickly can be a lifesaving quality. The story begins with a small muskrat sitting on the tree. When a hungry tiger comes along and wants to eat him, a muskrat cleverly distracts him by shouting, ¿Wait, I want to tell you a story!¿ Poor tiger says, 'Okay, but make it quick!'. I say 'poor', because that hesitation or curiosity turns out to be the tiger's big mistake, which will cost him a life. Because the muskrat tells him a series of stories about different animals that are about to be eaten by larger ones and, they, in turn, exclaim the the same thing: 'Wait! I want to tell you a story!'. Muskrat also adds the tiger into the story ¿ and also one hungry crocodile, as a predator that wants to eat the big cat. Finally one of the predators in the story refuses to listen and eats one of the victims, which causes a reversal in the chain of events...When there is a pause in the story, the tiger asks what happens next. 'Then,' resumed muskrat, 'the crocodile eats the tiger.' And the tiger finds out that he is to be eaten by a big green crocodile that has suddenly appeared behind him! This sudden development leads to surprising and funny ending, which will probably have children laughing and asking for the story to be read again. The clever muskrat is saved and goes away. The 'poor' tiger, however, has no such luck. There is a picture on the last pages which is showing the crocodile who has just eaten the tiger for his dinner. You can even see the tiger's tail sticking out of the crocodile's closed mouth... But as I said, the little muskrat gets away and is seen on the last page with a smug smile. To conclude, the story is top class and so are the illustrations. Great work!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 15, 2006

    great funny book

    When a hungry tiger comes along and said, 'I'm going to eat you, little muskrat,' the clever muskrat says, 'Wait!' and spins a tale to avoid becoming the tiger's lunch. And so, the muskrat begins to tell his tale about some other animals in similar predicaments, all leading to an unexpected ending. Muskrat is saved by a surprise appearance by a hungry crocodile. Muskrat is saved, but who ends in a crocodile's fat belly?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 4, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

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