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Sky Dancer Hardcover – September 30, 1996

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Hardcover, September 30, 1996
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The open skies and simple beauty of a farmland in winter provide a stark background for the story of the friendship between young Jenny and a wild hawk. The two connect instantly when the bird arrives one frosty February morning. It remains perched in a nearby tree for several days, seemingly as interested in watching Jenny as she is in watching it. But local farmers are itching to shoot whichever hawk has been preying on their chickens: " 'As far as I'm concerned,' said Owen Tibbs, 'you can take all the hawks and coyotes you can find and drop 'em off the edge of the earth. I wouldn't miss 'em.' " When a farmer comes for the hawk with a rifle, Jenny must defend it. Bushnell (Circus of the Wolves) conveys the intense affection of a person for a wild creature, a love that is untainted by assumptions about ownership and obedience; the hawk is nobody's pet. Unusual descriptions render familiar scenes fresh: "When the sun set and the hawk turned deep black, like a hole in the sky above her, [Jenny] walked back to the house." Ormerod's (Moonlight; One Hundred One Things to Do with a Baby) large watercolors have the cool glow of evening sun and Jenny's silhouette often echoes the shape of the hawk's wings, reinforcing the parallels between them. This thought-provoking book will stir the souls of nature-lovers and encourage all readers to see in themselves the free and wild at heart. Ages 4-up.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 3?A small but tightly focused drama makes this story stand out. From the first time Jenny sees the red-tailed hawk swoop down in her father's wintry pumpkin field, she is awed and breathless. From then on, seeming to form a bond, bird and girl watch one another every time Jenny goes into the field for chores or to play. When a neighboring farmer suspects that the hawk is a chicken killer and announces that he intends to shoot it, Jenny is determined to convince him that "her" hawk is not the culprit. Her nurturing father supports her against this angry man with a gun; in the end, she is right. The well-written text will read aloud well. The narrative and graceful watercolors support one another successfully. Jenny is skillfully portrayed by Ormerod's assured, expressive style that clearly depicts the child's emotions that lie behind the author's words. The farmhouse interior is sepia-warm and cluttered; farm exteriors are spare and full of wintry white space. Unfortunately, the hawk, while impressive and large, seems disappointingly flat and dimensionless in the illustrations of flight. Readers and listeners will probably be too interested to notice this small shortcoming.?Kate McClelland, Perrot Memorial Library, Greenwich, CT
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 and up
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; 1st ed edition (September 30, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0688052886
  • ISBN-13: 978-0688052881
  • Product Dimensions: 10.2 x 0.4 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,744,398 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
It is winter and snow is deep on the ground. Jenny lives with her dad on a farm where one day a hawk swoops down close to her, making her scream. Will the hawk still be there the next day? Will she build a 'relationship' with it?

In town, some of the locals are complaining about missing chickens and blaming it on a hawk. Is it Jenny's hawk? Her Dad thinks it is but Jenny doesn't agree. Whilst doing the farm chores, Jenny catches a glimpse of someone with a gun going towards her hawk. How will she stop them?

This is beautiful, well-written and illustrated book of an unusual 'friendship' between a hawk and a girl. The artwork alone will let you see the majesty of this amazing bird but the story adds all the extra dimensions making it a well rounded out story. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! Such a shame it is no longer in print.
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