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One Duck Stuck

One Duck Stuck

4.3 4
by Phyllis Root

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With bright, spirited illustrations by Jane Chapman, this rhythmic counting tale by Phyllis Root will have young listeners eager to join the slippy, sloppy fun!


With bright, spirited illustrations by Jane Chapman, this rhythmic counting tale by Phyllis Root will have young listeners eager to join the slippy, sloppy fun!

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Just as the title of this satisfying counting book says, there's one duck stuck (in the muck, as it turns out). Different groups of marshland creatures, from two fish to 10 dragonflies, appear with an offer of help. Each arrival is described with verbal relish: "Nine snakes/ leaving little wakes/ slither to the duck./ Slink, slink." However, no matter what the number or the species, the result is the same: the duck stays stuck. Root's (Mrs. Potter's Pig) wordplay finds an effective visual counterpart in Chapman's (Dora's Eggs) full-bleed gouaches. The illustrator revels in juxtaposing strong colors, so that the hues in her palette pop with a primary-like brightness. But the book does suffer from a major leap in logic: it's never clear how the animals tried to use their distinctive talents in their failed attempts to free the duck. When they all finally gather to effect a joint rescue effort, nothing happens except a recap of the funny noises they make; on the penultimate spread, the duck simply steps out of the goo with a "Spluck!" Will children wonder why the duck didn't extract itself earlier? Probably not, they'll be too enchanted by Chapman's vibrant pictures and the immensely satisfying sounds and rhythms of Root's text. Ages 2-5. (May)
Children's Literature - Kristin Harris
A rhyming, counting book, this is a story about a duck that gets stuck in the muck. Crying out for help, many creatures come in numeric sequence to attempt to get the duck unstuck. The creatures include such unsuspecting rescuers as crickets, snails and frogs. While individually they fail, when they all get together and try, they succeed. The duck gets out of the muck. The illustrations are bold and colorful, and apt to hold a young child's attention. Also geared to the young child are the many repeated phrases and sounds. This book is fun to listen to and look at.
School Library Journal
(PreS-Gr 1) This colorful counting book tells the tale of a poor duck that has one foot "stuck in the muck." In quick succession, groups of different animals try to set the victim free-two fish, three moose, four crickets, etc. None of the creatures is successful until they all work together and the beleaguered bird is finally able to fly away. Bold, playful, gouache paintings featuring bright rich colors show the bird's plight. The duck's frustration, surprise, and ultimate delight are evident in the expressive artwork. Unfortunately, the repetitive narrative is not as effective. The sentences are long and the rhyme is sometimes forced ("Nine snakes/leaving little wakes/slither to the duck./Slink, slink"). Still, a skilled reader may be able to transform this into a rollicking read-aloud and the illustrations will carry well in a group setting. Children will be eager to repeat the chant, "Help! Help! Who can help?"Heide Piehler, Shorewood Public Library, WI

Product Details

Sagebrush Education Resources
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
10.62(w) x 9.40(h) x 0.39(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Phyllis Root says she wanted One Duck Stuck "to be a north woods wetlands counting book, accurate to the marshes of Minnesota. All the animals are actually found here. I love to go canoeing and camping, and this book is a composite of my own experiences." Phyllis Root has written many books for children, including WHAT BABY WANTS, ALL FOR THE NEWBORN BABY, and KISS THE COW!

Jane Chapman has a pet tortoise named Muggs, who at the age of seventy is a family heirloom, and one day she would like to have a duck as well. She is the illustrator of several books for children, including THE EMPEROR'S EGG by Martin Jenkins and THE STORY OF CHRISTMAS by Vivian French.

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One Duck Stuck 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
One Duck Stuck is a wonderful rhyming poem that teaches children to count while also entertaining them with colorful illustrations. This book is a joy to read to children, and the style lends itself to laughter and joy for all ages. A must for any true book lovers library!