• Title: Rumor: A Jataka Tale from India
  • Author: Jan Thornhill
  • Released: 2005-03-03
  • Language: English
  • Pages: 0
  • ISBN: 0606346090
  • ISBN13: 978-0606346092
  • ASIN: 0606346090
From School Library Journal Kindergarten-Grade 2-The plot of this beautifully rendered tale is reminiscent of the story of Chicken Little. When a young hare hears a mango crash to earth, she believes that the world is breaking up. As she flees in panic, she gathers up thousands of hares, boars, deer, tigers, and rhinoceroses, who join her in her flight. Unlike Chicken Little, this hare finally meets a wise and kind lion (representing the Buddha, although this is mentioned only in the endnote) who takes her back to find the mango and recognize her mistake. This is a story worth knowing, both for its cultural heritage and for its wise message, and it is retold in well-chosen language with just enough repetition to make the narrative sing without bogging it down. Best of all, however, are the illustrations. Rich greens, blues, and red-oranges dominate bordered paintings of hordes of animals running through the habitats of India. Some pages have a Rousseau-like look. Others are almost tessellations of creatures moving in unison. Varying perspectives move from close-ups of animals to bird's-eye views of forest, stream, marshland, and mango grove. The plot, language, and illustrations combine to make a fine read-aloud.
Ellen Heath, Orchard School, Ridgewood, NJ
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From PreS-Gr. 2. "What if the world breaks apart?" wonders an anxiety-prone hare in this folktale set in a lush forest in India. When a mango falls to the ground with a loud noise, the hare panics and speeds off, convinced that, indeed, the world is breaking apart. Her terror is contagious, and soon she's joined by other animals--boars, deer, tigers, rhinos--until the crowd meets a lion that brings reason and calm. An author's note refers to this as a retelling of an ancient Jataka tale--a story in which the Buddha appears in animal form. There's no mention of Buddha until that final note, however, so most children will think of Chicken Little when they read this well-told parable about the danger of rumors and how mass hysteria happens. The cumulative list of animals and the slightly blurred but luxurious color spreads of animals on the run have solid child appeal. Other stories rooted in Buddhist tradition can be found in the Read-alikes feature "Beginning Buddhism" [BKL Ja 1 & 15 02]. Gillian Engberg
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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