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ROCKY AND THE LAMB by Greg Gormley


by Greg Gormley & illustrated by Lynne Chapman

Age Range: 6 - 8

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2006
ISBN: 0-7641-5939-9
Publisher: Barron’s

In this unexceptional bully tale, a wolf as “mean and cowardly as a dog at bath time” changes his ways after snatching a box from a cute little lamb in a pink coat, and discovering the literal truth of her claim that it contains a beautiful crown guarded by “the scariest, hairiest monster you could possibly imagine.” Gormley pads out the tale, first by having the wolf trail the oblivious lamb up and then back down a mountain through thorny thickets, falling rocks and deep snow to no particular purpose—then by adding an ensuing chase over the same ground after the monster rears up. In Chapman’s illustrations, the polka-dotted monster looks about as fierce as a Muppet, and the concluding scene of the wolf helpfully guiding his suddenly trusting former victims through the mountains is similarly unconvincing. More perceptive, or at least satisfying for the beleaguered, takes on the theme abound, like Elise Broach’s Cousin John Is Coming! (June 2006), illustrated by Nate Lilly. (Picture book. 6-8)