CM . . .
. Volume VIII Number 13 . . . . March 1, 2002
Two award-winning creators of children's books have teamed up to bring this little-known Hungarian folktale to Canadian children. Celia Barker Lottridge has drawn on her experience as a storyteller and created a well-paced, humourous story that begs to be read aloud. Joanne Fitzgerald's softly textured illustrations, with their interlocking borders, visually bring the story to life.
Little Rooster lives with a woman so poor he often has to scratch for his own supper in the road. One day he discovers a diamond button, but, before he can bring it home, a greedy sultan carries it off to his palace. Little Rooster follows, determined to retrieve it and, despite the sultan's repeated efforts to dispose of him, the rooster reappears demanding his diamond. The exasperated sultan finally capitulates, and the rooster brings home to his surprised mistress not just one diamond button but as many as he could hold.
reflects the sultan's mild methods of ridding himself of the pesky rooster,
such as placing him in a beehive, with her gentle use of colour and
expression. In the borders framing the full and double-page pictures,
she has embedded small images that mirror aspects of that page's content.
She also includes a recurring green lizard, and observant children,
who may be used to finding the tiny mouse in Good Night Moon,
will delight in locating the little lizard on the palace walls. Except
in one close-up of him discovering the diamond, the little rooster is
placed next to large people. In this way, Fitzgerald emphasizes his
relative small size and the enormity of his final achievement.
Mews is the Director of the Curriculum Materials Centre at the Faculty
of Education, Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John's NF.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.