RIDDLE OF THE NILE by Deborah Nash


by & illustrated by
Age Range: 5 - 7
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Eager to prove his wisdom and worthiness to become King of the Nile, Baby Crocodile swims up the river in search of the answer to Crookedy Crocodile’s riddle (the classic St. Ives nursery rhyme localized). He asks an assortment of objects and animals—the Great Sphinx, a cobra, a frog, a perch, a cat and the statue of Alexander the Great. After much confusion and no further ahead in his response, he finally arrives at the Temple Kom Ombo where he encounters Sobek, the “colossal Crocodile God,” who tells him “there is only one simple answer.” Realizing the answer, Baby Crocodile returns to the river with “a crown of lotus flowers” on his head, becoming King. As she did in Made in China (2006), Nash uses the story line to provide a tour of ancient and modern Egypt with a dual text describing the sights, culture and customs combining ancient and new settings. Mixed-media paintings imitating hieroglyphic artwork of figures in profile pose include sand from Egypt and gold foil. Factual information presented, however brief, could be enhanced with a short bibliography or suggested reading list, as Tamar Bower does in the more authentic-looking and beautiful rendition of the story, How the Amazon Queen Fought the Prince of Egypt (2005). (Picture book. 5-7)

Pub Date: May 1st, 2007
ISBN: 978-1-84507-466-1
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Frances Lincoln
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 2007


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