Wings: A Tale of Two Chickens

Overview

Sensible Harriet has to rescue silly Winnie from the clutches of Mr. Johnson, who Winnie fails to recognize as a fox. Never were two chickens more different than Harriet and Winnie. Harriet kept busy with many hobbies, while flighty Winnie was often bored. So when that sly fox Mr. Johnson happened by Winnie's garden, she couldn't resist the chance to live a little and climbed into the basket of his balloon. Now it's up to Harriet to save her foolish friend from Mr. Johnson's fricassee pot—and there are chases ...
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Overview

Sensible Harriet has to rescue silly Winnie from the clutches of Mr. Johnson, who Winnie fails to recognize as a fox. Never were two chickens more different than Harriet and Winnie. Harriet kept busy with many hobbies, while flighty Winnie was often bored. So when that sly fox Mr. Johnson happened by Winnie's garden, she couldn't resist the chance to live a little and climbed into the basket of his balloon. Now it's up to Harriet to save her foolish friend from Mr. Johnson's fricassee pot—and there are chases galore, hairsbreadth escapes, clever disguises, and lots more tomfoolery before she does. James Marshall's clever wit and lively sense of the absurd keep this hilarious romp rollicking along from start to cliff-hanging finish.

Harriet the chicken rescues her foolish friend from the clutches of a wily fox.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Another of James Marshall's beloved books returns, Wings: A Tale of Two Chickens (1986), in which Winnie the chicken, who doesn't read, finds herself prey to a fox. It's up to feathered Harriet to rescue her pal. "There is more here than just a hilarious plot," wrote PW upon its original 1986 publication. "Very real characters, a plug for reading, a warning about strangers and animated, breezy art full of detail. Marshall is in top form here."
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Wings gets off to a flying start as Winnie, a bored chicken, takes off in a stranger's balloon basket, so she can ``live a little.'' Foolish, uneducated Winnie never realizes until the tale's end that the stranger is a fox planning a chicken dinner. But her sensible sister Harriet who knows about foxes recognizes the danger and, in a clever disguise, outfoxes the abductor after some madcap shenanigans. But there is more here than just a hilarious plotvery real characters, a plug for reading, a warning about strangers and, above all, animated, breezy art full of detail, expression and humor. Marshall is in top form here. 38
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2 This is typical Marshall: a series of minor crises resolved in outlandishly humorous ways, ways that savvy young children can anticipate and revel in the happy second-guessing. Here a gluttonous dumb cluck is led astray by the wily fox, only to be rescued by her intelligent friend. Marshall's boldly simple watercolors are used to expressive advantage in depicting chickens as bulky tea-cosies and a hot-air balloon a key apparatus in this farcical melodrama of similar shape. The bit of subtlety in the story comes by way of a chicken crossing road-marker, a bear preacher who is aggressive in showing his parishioners how to ``help the needy'' and a chicken costume only a vacuous hen would fall for. The text is just enough to add texture to this smoothie of visual slapstick. Kenneth Marantz, Art Education Department, Ohio State University, Columbus
From the Publisher
“There is more here than just a hilarious plot—very real characters, a plug for reading, a warning about strangers and above all, animated, breezy art full of detail, expression, and humor. Marshall is in top form here.” Publishers Weekly

"Satisfying suspense." Kirkus Reviews

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780618316595
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 3/24/2003
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 177,964
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 7.50 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.13 (d)

Meet the Author

James Marshall (1942–1992) created dozens of exuberant and captivating books for children, including The Stupids, Miss Nelson Is Missing!, and the ever-popular George and Martha books. Before creating his canon of classic, hilarious children’s books, James Marshall played the viola, studied French, and received a master’s degree from Trinity College. He also doodled. It was the doodles, and the unforgettable characters that emerged from them, that led him to his life’s work as one of the finest creators of children’s books of the twentieth century. In 2007, James Marshall was posthumously awarded the Laura Ingalls Wilder medal for his lasting contribution to literature for children.

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