GRANDMOTHER'S PIGEON by Louise Erdrich

GRANDMOTHER'S PIGEON

by , illustrated by
Age Range: 6 - 9

KIRKUS REVIEW

In her first picture book, a much-praised novelist tips the delicate balance between the fanciful and more realistic aspects of storytelling until the tale almost disintegrates into whimsy. In Grandmother's cluttered bedroom, undisturbed ever since she disappeared a year ago on the back of a porpoise (ostensibly headed for Greenland), three bird's eggs inexplicably hatch and are identified as passenger pigeons, long thought to be extinct. Their existence causes a scientific and media sensation, but they are languishing in the cage, so the children release them, with messages attached to their legs. Some while later, they receive their first communication from their missing grandmother, whom they have mourned as lost forever, thanking them for their messages and promising to return soon. The point of all this may be that "nature is both tough and fragile," as an ornithologist describes the lesson of the passenger pigeon's extinction, or it may have something to do with the folly of examining miracles too closely. LaMarche (illustrator of Laura Melmed's The Rainbabies) anchors the story with his highly realistic acrylic and colored pencil illustrations that showcase his gift for homely, telling details: the apple core among the clutter on a young boy's bedroom shelf or the chipped polish on a small girl's grubby nails. A lyrical, if somewhat obscure, tale. (Picture book. 6-9)

Pub Date: April 15th, 1996
ISBN: 0-7868-0165-4
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Hyperion
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15th, 1996




MORE BY LOUISE ERDRICH

ChildrenCHICKADEE by Louise Erdrich
by Louise Erdrich
ChildrenTHE PORCUPINE YEAR by Louise Erdrich
by Louise Erdrich
ChildrenTHE GAME OF SILENCE by Louise Erdrich
by Louise Erdrich

MORE BY JIM LAMARCHE

ChildrenA SINGLE PEARL by Donna Jo Napoli
by Donna Jo Napoli
ChildrenIVY TAKES CARE by Rosemary Wells
by Rosemary Wells
ChildrenTHE CARPENTER'S GIFT by David Rubel
by David Rubel

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

IndieA SMIDGEN FOR A PIGEON by Alexandra Michelle Hobson
by Alexandra Michelle Hobson