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Barkus, Sly and the Golden Egg Hardcover – July 5, 2002


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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

What could be more entertaining than a story of cooped-up chickens planning their own escape? That is, unless you're a chicken-eating, chicken-hoarding fox, in which case it's not an amusing story at all. Barkus Fox and his cousin Sly are as foxy as they come. In the dead of night, they steal whatever they like from the town citizens, including chickens for supper. Enter Biddy, Bluff, and Tweed, three hens who refuse to be served with cream sauce. Trapped in the fox's shed after their rude capture, they hatch an ingenious plan to fly the coop. As the salivating fox comes to fetch one to cook the next day, clever Tweed manages to convince Sly that Biddy has the ability to lay golden eggs--and that if he eats one of them, she will be too upset to do it. Will Sly fall for the trick? Who will ultimately outfox whom? Sally Anne Lambert's lovely watercolor illustrations--too pretty for such greedy rogues, really--add to the old-fashioned flavor of this classic, happy-ending tale of foxes and chickens. (Ages 5 to 8) --Karin Snelson

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 2-Two fox cousins are up to no good. They spend their nights stealing, and their shed is filled with loot. Biddy, Bluff, and Tweed, three chickens stolen by the dishonest duo, are being held captive until such time as they will be served up for the dastardly pair's dinner. But Tweed has a plan. Poking through the treasures, she discovers a box of gold utensils including a little ladle, and she convinces Sly that Biddy is about to lay a golden egg. Then, with the assistance of a plum cake supplied by one of the culprits, he convinces each of them that the other has run off with the prize. The chickens escape, leaving a trail of golden knives and forks, which leads the farmer and townspeople to their stolen treasures. Having the universal appeal of the weak outwitting the strong, the story is told with delicious humor and good pacing, and the pleasing watercolor illustrations add much detail to the clever text. Variety in size and placement of the pictures creates a nice artistic balance and the colors glow with warmth. The foxes' size and posture convey the danger they represent to the chickens, yet their menace is tempered by their foolishness, and one picture of the two resting by the fire after dinner is a benign scene reminiscent of Wind in the Willows. Chicken personalities, too, are conveyed through gesture and facial expression. A grand package.
Marie Orlando, Suffolk Cooperative Library System, Bellport, NY
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 550L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens (July 5, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1582347646
  • ISBN-13: 978-1582347646
  • Product Dimensions: 9.8 x 0.4 x 12.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,889,833 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By M. Johnston on February 8, 2005
Format: Hardcover
This is a great fable type story that keeps children's attention. I love how the chickens work together through what appears to be a hopeless situation. The birds take advantage of the foxes greed and outsmart them in the end.

I was surprised to see the age guidelines for this book. I think it can be used for older children as well as the younger groups. There is great dialogue and the book is beautifully illustrated.
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