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YOU'RE SOMEBODY SPECIAL, WALLIWIGS! by Joan Rankin

YOU'RE SOMEBODY SPECIAL, WALLIWIGS!

By Joan Rankin

Pub Date: May 1st, 1999
ISBN: 0-689-82230-8
Publisher: McElderry

A rare Great Black Cockatoo is stranded as a fledgling aboard a steamship that has been his home since birth in this funny outing from Rankin (Wow! It’s Great Being a Duck, 1998, etc.). Left alone one morning, Walliwigs becomes aware that the steamship is leaving the harbor and therefore his mother, behind. He’s discovered by a cabin boy and taken to a farm owned by the boy’s aunt. Life in the chicken house is made bearable only with the help of Martha, a hen who loves him as her own. She recognizes his indomitable spirit and cherishes his uniqueness, warding off insensitive comments from other hens in the coop. When Professor Beak, a traveling ornithologist, takes delight in Walliwigs, the results are thrilling—he’s a rare, practically extinct bird. Borrowing on the theme from the tale of the Ugly Duckling, Rankin shows again that being different is something rare and wonderful, not a thing to be feared. Her lively watercolor art captures the cockiness of audacious chickens who feel superior without reasonable justification. Children, often bullied, more often misunderstood, will find their spirits lifted by this encounter with Walliwigs. (Picture book. 4-8)