RABBIT MAKES A MONKEY OF LION by Verna Aardema

RABBIT MAKES A MONKEY OF LION

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KIRKUS REVIEW

At every turn, poor Lion is outwitted by cunning Rabbit and her friends in this Swahili trickster tale. The honey guide (a charming bird, but a troublemaker) tempts Rabbit with a bee's nest in Lion's calabash tree. Rabbit, who can't resist honey, involves first Bush-rat and then Turtle in dangerous escapades trying to get it, with all three tricking Lion and escaping when he threatens to eat them. After they twice "make a monkey of Lion," Rabbit shames him further by pretending that his voice from within her house is the house itself greeting her--a ploy familiar to readers of the Brer Rabbit tales, but still thoroughly satisfying. Pinkney's expressive lines and warm watercolors evoke an East African landscape of green, gold and brown; they aptly reflect the story's humor. Though predictable, Aardema's retelling moves nicely, with a comfortable mix of description, colloquial exclamations, and dialogue.

Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Dial
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