THE GREEDY SPARROW:  AN ARMENIAN TALE by Lucine Kasbarian

THE GREEDY SPARROW: AN ARMENIAN TALE

adapted by , illustrated by
Age Range: 4 - 7

KIRKUS REVIEW

Victim becomes victimizer in this tale inspired by an Armenian fable. A sparrow catches a thorn in his foot and asks a baker to remove it. She obliges and throws it in the oven. Later, the sparrow returns to ask for the thorn and, audaciously demands bread in its place. He tricks the shepherd in the same way, giving him the bread to watch and when the shepherd eats it, the sparrow demands a sheep. Flying over a wedding feast, he asks the groom to mind the sheep, but the groom feeds the wedding guests shish kabobs and the sparrow wants the bride in payment! The sparrow continues his escalation until he ends up with a lute—until, sitting on a thorny branch, he loses his footing. The lute falls, and he is as he began, with nothing but a thorn in his foot. The author notes this is based on a centuries-old Armenian tale. In Zaikina's bold, folk-style illustrations, both characters and landscape are heavily outlined in black, and the characters' dialogue is in speech balloons. Pictures are lightened with bright, textured colors (they were made with oil paint and layers of wax) and have an appealing, vigorous heft. Armenian folk attire and references to places in Armenia authenticate the tale. It's a rhythmic read-aloud beginning readers can share. (Picture book. 4-7)

Pub Date: April 1st, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-7614-5821-0
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Marshall Cavendish
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1st, 2011




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