Friday, July 11, 2008

Duck's Tale by Harmen van Straaten

This is a lovely story with engaging illustrations. First, it is a North-South book, and I have always found their picturebooks intriguing. This particular gem is the story within a story of Duck. He finds a pen and then wanders over to Toad's house to see if he wants to go boating. But Toad has found a pair of glasses and is busy "reading." Duck can't find Hedgehog and Otter, so he thinks "If Toad can read because he has glasses, then I must be able to write because I have a pen!" Duck writes everything he knows about himself - and who better to read it than Toad? Toad creates Duck's Tale - a poignant story of friendship - and promises to "read" any more adventures Duck writes.

I am guessing the medium is watercolor and ink (yeah, yeah, I don't know much about art). The pictures are warm and soft, but the animals have cheerful colors and quirky notes; each has a piece of clothing (except Hedgehog, who apparently only wears his scarf in winter) Duck has a hat, Toad a vest and Otter a scarf.
This is a story of friendship and summer, of imagination and art.

Verdict: A warm story of friendship and an imaginative tale of writing. Recommended - it's worth finding a lightly used copy for your personal or library collection.

ISBN: 978-0735821330; Published March 2007 by North-South (out of print); Borrowed from the library; Added to my personal wishlist

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