How Robin Saved Spring (Anglais) Relié – 31 mars 2009
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Debbie Ouellet's How Robin Saved Spring is a tale of two sisters (Lady Winter & Sister Spring), each charged with managing their corresponding seasons. Lady Winter doesn't want winter to end, and conspires to keep her sister asleep so she can continue her reign. Recognizing the gravity of the situation, brown-breasted Robin calls upon various woodland creatures to try and wake Sister Spring from her slumber. All attempts fail, although they do provide wonderful bits of story for the creatures. For instance, in her attempt to wake Sister Spring, Ladybug hides among some coals near the fire. When it becomes too hot for her, little black dots are burned into her red back! This part of the story brought a smile to my daughters' faces each time we encountered a new "feature" of one of the woodland creatures.
When all the other creatures have failed to wake Sister Spring, Robin takes matters into his own hands (or wings?). He convinces Mother Sun to give him just a bit of morning light to wake Sister Spring. Mother Sun tells him that morning light is precious and asks what he is willing to trade for it; he decides to trade his beautiful voice. In getting the morning light from Mother Sun, his chest is given its orange-red appearance and, of course, he is able to wake Sister Spring with the combination of the very special morning light and his new song--UP! UP! UP!
Although completely original, this book has the feel of a classic fable or folk tale. The back flap of the jacket says this is the first book Ms. Ouellet has written for young readers, but I'm sure it will not be her last. The illustrations are BEAUTIFUL and it made me want to seek out other works illustrated by Nicoletta Ceccoli. In fact, Ouellet and Ceccoli are make quite a dynamic duo and should work together again!
The intended age for this story is a bit hard to pin down. For starters, it has the feeling of being a timeless and ageless kind of story. I noted on Amazon's info that it's listed as being for readers ages 9-12, but that sort of seems based on vocabulary. There's another item above that mentions it as being for preschool through grade 2. We read it together as a bedtime story and I think that was just right. My girls were enthralled from the first page. Better still, the moment I finished it my 8 year old whispered "can we read it again?" What more could you ask for? I'd be kind of surprised to see my 8 year old pick it up and read it on her own, but can imagine my 5 year old sitting with this for HOURS going through the pages, pretending to read it to her dolls, and imagining herself in the rich scenes created by illustrator Nicoletta Ceccoli.
In short, I'd say this is a great book to add to your collection! It will be a favorite in spring, of course, but will likely become a favorite story for any time of year.
Winter into more winter, if Lady Winter has anything to do with it. She does not want Sister Spring to awaken because it would mean her beautiful white snow and ice crystals would melt and the silence that a fresh snow brings would be halted for months. No, better to leave things as they are now, to Lady Winter's liking. And to do that, she must make sure that Sister Spring continues to slumber.
How Robin Saved Spring is about the changing of the seasons and how Lady Winter wants to stop the change. Lady Winter is close to getting her way but the animals start to understand what is happening and they try to wake and warn Sister Spring. The biggest and smallest creatures do not succeed but maybe Robin will be the one to make a difference.
It is full of whimsical illustrations. Beautiful illustrations.
How Robin Saved Spring is a very cute book about saving spring and how various animals and insects came to hibernate and/or bed down for the winter.
Recommended for older children because it is wordier than other picture books. I would say five to ten years of age.
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