When Lion meets Sarah walking in the jungle singing a happy song, he tells her she shouldn't be there! Nobody in his jungle just walks or sings: they prowl, creep, swing, lumber, slither and stampede. Or, they roar, yowl, grunt, chatter and harrumph! Just as Sarah's about to become the Lion's Lunch, she tells him she can do something that no-one else in the jungle can do ...An uplifting story that will inspire courage and confidence in all!
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Fiona Tierney is the author of Peek at the Week in the Zoo and Look What Blew Into the Zoo. She lives in Dublin, Ireland. You can visit her website at www.fionatierney.com.
Margaret Chamberlain is an acclaimed picture book artist, most recently of Pink! She lives in Lyme Regis, England. You can visit her website at www.margaretchamberlain.co.uk.
What starts as a playful romp, taking inspiration from Louise Fatio’s The Happy Lion, becomes a timely message about bullying. Young Sarah strolls through the jungle singing—until the King of the Jungle threatens to eat. Nobody strolls or sings in his jungle. When she asks to stay, Lion names all the things she can’t do: run like Cheetah, climb like Monkey, leap like Gazelle, etc. But Sarah claims she can do something they can’t—draw. All the animals except Lion like their portraits: You’ve made me look mad and mean, he growls. You’re bad-tempered and bossy, the other animals counter. When Lion asks how he can change, Sarah suggests he try helping everybody instead of bullying them. The next time Sarah visits, her picture shows A Great Big Happy Lion. The computerized pen-and-ink cartoons come alive with brightly colored, broad shapes limned in dark lines. Many animals are sketched in the background, making their respective noises, though only those Sarah draws are named. Grades K-3. --Julie Cummins
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