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Kali And the Rat Snake Hardcover – September 1, 2006


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 6 and up
  • Grade Level: 1 and up
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Kane/Miller Book Pub (September 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1933605103
  • ISBN-13: 978-1933605104
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 8.6 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,016,986 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 1-3–Kali has always been proud of his father, who is the best snake catcher in their Indian village. But when he attends school, the children make fun of his Irula ways. They are disdainful of what Kali eats, and they shun him. Friendless and lonely, he dreads school. But one day the classroom is visited by a six-foot-long rat snake. With the children screaming and the teacher hiding under his desk, Kali grabs it and becomes the class hero. The text is smoothly written, with lots of cultural details. The story moves at a good pace, with excellent use of text that leaves readers anticipating what will happen when each page is turned. Natarajan's stylized illustrations are a mixture of smaller pencil drawings and luscious larger paintings that seem to be done on silk. The endpapers resemble a beautiful batik fabric. Everything works together for an evocative presentation. This book has much to offer children learning about other cultures. It could also be used to begin discussions about bullying, prejudice, and acceptance.–Mary Hazelton, Elementary Schools in Warren & Waldoboro, ME
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Review

"A great book about friendship and being careful not to judge others." --- Kids Bookshelf

"The text is smoothly written, with lots of cultural details. The story moves at a good pace, with excellent use of text that leaves readers anticipating what will happen when each page is turned. Natarajan's stylized illustrations are a mixture of smaller pencil drawings and luscious larger paintings that seem to be done on silk. The endpapers resemble a beautiful batik fabric. Everything works together for an evocative presentation. This book has much to offer children learning about other cultures." --- School Library Journal

"...ideal for teaching children about acceptance. The sense of belonging and finding one s identity is a story that is hard to make relatable to children. This one does so without preaching." --- Toy Directory

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By alanna on January 8, 2011
Format: Hardcover
This is a great coming-of-age story, in which a loner boy, Kali, becomes prestigious in his classroom after an encounter with a scary snake. The vocabulary, grammar level, and basic sentence structure is perfect for a second level Hindi reader. I would recommend this book to all, especially those who are curious to learn one's struggles to survive in the real world. It basically teaches you how-to! If you, or someone you have trouble fitting in and finding friends, I recommend this book to him or her.
Then...sit down. Grab a snack! And enjoy reading about what happens next!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Diana Rohini LaVigne on January 7, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Title: Kali and the Rat Snake
Author: Zai Whitaker
Illustration: Srividya Nataranjan
Published by: Kane/Miller Book Publishers
ISBN 13: 978-1-933605-10-4
Review by: Diana Rohini LaVigne, Indian Life & Style Magazine

Teaching kids how to deal with peer pressure is only one of the important messages that Kali and the Rat Snake by Zai Whitaker presents. The bold illustrations and expressive text starts with the tale of a boy who is struggling from the lack of acceptance of his classmates in regards to his unusual background. Children taunt the young Kali and although some children might have bad intentions, Kali only dreams of being accepted by his peers.

He is loved by his teacher and otherwise living a happy life, but being new to school and having trouble making friends is forming a very unhappy side to Kali's life. A moment of crisis changes the course of his future when a snake appears in the school room threatening Kali, his teacher and his classmates. Being the son of a snake catcher, Kali takes immediate action by securing the snake without much effort. Classmates are instantly thankful to Kali for knowing how to capture the potentially dangerous wild snake. Classmate's respect opens the door for Kali to make new friendships and almost insures his acceptance with other students.

The Illustrations by Srividya Nataranjan bring the story alive and help demonstrate how Kali is able to overcome his challenges and gain the respect of his fellow schoolmates. Images are truly unique and bring a level of cultural awareness to youthful readers. Kali and the Rat Snake captured my heart and will surely capture the hearts and minds of today's youth. It a beautiful and well-written book which is a solid contribution to children's cultural literature.
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Format: Hardcover
Set in India, Kali And The Rat Snake is the picturebook story of a boy, Kali, who has trouble fitting in at school. He is one of the Irula, an indigenous tribal people who live in Southern India and who have traditionally made a living as snake catchers. As the son of a snake catcher, Kali feels different from the other children, a teacher's pet, and he has trouble making friends. But when a big rat snake threatens the class, only Kali knows what to do! Energetic color illustrations by Srividya Natarajan pepper this delightful children's story from Zai Whitaker about accepting differences and learning to appreciate the talents in oneself and others. Highly recommended.
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By naeler on June 25, 2014
Format: Hardcover
Excellent quality printing on very good paper.

“I hate school,” he told the bushes as he walked slower and slower, “and school hates me.”
Because of he is Irula, an indigenous tribal people in Southern India, and because his father is a famous snake catcher, Kali is an outcast at school. He is not like the rest of the children who do not accept him because he is different. He sits alone in the back row and wishes that he had friends. Kali finally gains acceptance when he catches a rat snake. The message of acceptance is a good one and very well presented. This is a truly wonderful and enjoyable book for all ages.
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