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GOOSE AND DUCK by Jean Craighead George


by Jean Craighead George & illustrated by Priscilla Lamont

Age Range: 5 - 7

Pub Date: Jan. 8th, 2008
ISBN: 978-0-06-117076-8
Publisher: Laura Geringer/HarperCollins

George, renowned for blending respect for nature with compelling story craft, introduces biological basics such as imprinting and avian migration in this gentle easy reader. A boy discovers a hatching gosling: “He stared at me. / I stared at him. / And I became his mother.” Goose mimics everything the boy does, and when they both happen on another hatching egg, the ensuing duckling imprints on Goose. Though some hijinks down at the police station (where Goose and Duck quickly wear out their welcome) seem a bit tacked on, George artfully incorporates simple textual patterns and humorous touches that are just right for new readers. Lamont’s sweet, uncomplicated pictures nicely explicate the text. George’s ending is unusually poignant for the genre, as each bird, upon observing others of its species migrating south, “knew who he was.” Our narrator takes their leaving in as much stride as their arrival: “That’s how it is with birds.” Satisfyingly down-to-earth. (Easy reader. 5-7)