THE BIRD GARDEN by Gerald Rose


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A fable of a mynah bird who revenges herself on the showy fowl who fail to welcome her as a newcomer to the Sultan's garden by teaching them to speak words which only she understands--insults which cause the Sultan to expel the miscreants from the garden. Cockatoo, Paradise Bird and Peacock are jealous because Mynah Bird and the Sultan laugh together and understand each other, gaining Mynah Bird special privileges. They beg Mynah Bird to teach them to say such boastful things as ""I am the most beautiful bird in the whole world,"" but she tricks them by getting them to parrot such phrases as ""O Sultan! Your face is like the back view of an elephant,"" thus ensuring her coveted place as cleverest of the birds. This rather simple tale serves as vehicle for Rose's flamboyantly effective, flat, color-filled designs where swirling feathers and resplendent birds vie for place with the solid, yellow-turbaned sultan, all set off by bright borders in geometric designs that might derive from Turkish carpets. A picture book which, because of its message on the nature of language, may be of most use with young readers.

Pub Date: Feb. 3rd, 1986
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Bodley Head--dist. by Salem