One night, a girl named Rose is visited by magical lions with moony, almost human faces that "climb out of the sea." One lion, with a stringy yellow mane that resembles Rose's red hair, comes to her room and takes her flying through outer space, where they encounter dreamy, galactic creatures: "Past Pegasus, the horse,/ And all his herd stampeding;/ Past Pisces and her fish-kids,/ Gluttonously feeding." When Rose and the lion get caught up in a "cosmic suction cup" (a black hole), Cetus, the "mighty stellar whale," and a unicorn rescue them. They then return home to "that isolated beach/ Where every lion frolics now,/ A happy kid with each." Swarner's (Before You Were Born) fantastical shapes and the textural, surreal landscapes are so evocative that Greenberg's (Crocs!) text can occasionally feel gratuitous, though dashes of science and fancy lend the lullaby-like verse freshness ("They jump-rope crescent moons,/ Hopscotch asteroids./ They scamper and they frisk/ Through interstellar voids"). Imaginative readers should leave the pages wishing for a midnight visit from a lion of their own. Ages 5-8. (May)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Enchanted Lionsby David Greenberg
One evening, Rose looks out her window to see enchanted lions climb out of the sea. After she scratches one behind his ears, she climb onto his back for a breathtaking tour of the cosmos. They race with Monoceros the unicorn, jump-rope crescent moons, and are rescued from a black hole by Cetus, the whale. Once back home, they rub noses goodbye and the lions return to the sea, leaving Rose to dream about her interstellar flight. Luminous illustrations perfectly complement melodic text in this out-of-this-world adventure sure to entrance readers as it introduces them to celestial bodies.
It's nighttime, and young Rose looks out her window toward the ocean. "Enchanted lions climb out of the sea/And shake their manes to dry./They caper and slap,/Snarl and purr./They nuzzle and nip/And lazily lick each other's fur." She makes friends with one of them, and soon she is riding on his back high in the sky among the stars. The rhyming quatrains contain some memorable imagery: "The blossoms of a pear tree/Suddenly rustle and sigh." Beautiful illustrations display shooting stars and dramatic visualizations of the constellations. Rose's radiant red hair and the lion's vibrant golden figure glow against the deep blue sky and serene green sea. There is a lovely picture of Rose and her lion hugging. The creature's golden mane may remind readers of William Pene Du Bois' fanciful depiction of the regal beast in Lion (Viking, 1956; o.p.). The illustrations are lovely, but the text is a bit slow in engaging readers in this adventure in the sky.-Kirsten Cutler, Sonoma County Library, CA
- Penguin Young Readers Group
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- Age Range:
- 5 - 8 Years
Meet the Author
David T. Greenberg lives in Portland, Oregon. The inspiration for this text came from Henri Rousseau’s Sleeping Gypsy.
Kristina Swarner lives in Chicago, Illinois.
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