Thursday, July 22, 2010

How to Heal a Broken Wing: International Title #3

Author: Bob Graham
Illustrator: Bob Graham
Year Published: 2008
Country of Publication: Australia
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Awards: N/A

What did you like/dislike about the book?
Bob Graham's book, How to Heal a Broken Wing, is an emotional tale of a boy, Will, who finds a bird with a broken wing.  As the world bustles around him, Will takes the bird into his home and nurses it back to health.  This book has minimal text, the majority of the story is told in pictures.

My favorite detail of the book is the storytelling ability of the pictures.  Due to minimal text, the reader is forced to use picture clues to piece together the story.  I also enjoyed the bright illustrations, especially the light bursts around Will.  It helped communicate the story's hero.  Graham has a gift for simplistic, but honest, storytelling.

I can imagine some readers being upset about the bird falling from the sky.  However, it would be a good teaching moment about empathy.

This book is appropriate for all ages of readers.  It can be used to teach about empathy, life cycles, and noticing details.

What in your life would have influenced this reaction/response?
Seeing an animal in distress is difficult for anyone.  I like teaching students to use all the clues at their disposal when reading a story.  This book would be a great way to reinforce that skill.

How does this book compare to similar books/author’s other books?
The author's other titles have similar themes surrounding young characters and animals.  Graham's work has been noted by several award-winning titles, including those for illustrating.  His simple illustrations do not crowd out the plot.

What did I learn about children’s literature from this book?
Pictures can convey more than words can.  It is important to pay attention to details, especially in children's literature.  There did not seem to be a difference in children's literature between Australia and America.

Other titles by this author include:

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