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The Rabbit's Tail: A Story From Korea Hardcover – March 15, 1999

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 8 years
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (BYR); 1st edition (March 15, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0805045805
  • ISBN-13: 978-0805045802
  • Product Dimensions: 10.3 x 10.3 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,617,053 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 3-Inside a house on the edge of a village, a mother playfully tries to quiet her crying baby with a threat: "the tiger will get you." Meanwhile, a hungry tiger lurks outside. When the child finally stops crying with the offer of a dried persimmon, the tiger, who can only hear the exchange, assumes she has called on a creature scarier than he is. Terrified, he slinks into an outlying stall. Mistaking the tiger for an ox, a thief slips a rope around his neck and mounts him. The tiger in turn believes his rider is the dreadful dried persimmon. After a wild ride, the thief escapes. When the tiger tries to explain his adventure to a rabbit, the rabbit searches for the thief and loses his long tail. A source note explains that the picture book is adapted from a story in Han's Korean Folk and Fairy Tales (Hollym, 1992; o.p.) and describes other versions. Readers familiar with the author's The Rabbit's Judgment and The Rabbit's Escape (both Holt, 1995), both illustrated by Yumi Heo, will find this new title a departure. Heo's playful surrealism has been replaced by Wehrman's showy, realistic paintings in acrylic gouache. While the tale is vividly retold, the illustrations seem heavy-handed and literal. Unlike its predecessors, this rabbit tale is printed in English only. An amusing entertainment about misperceptions, not particularly well served by its illustrations, but nevertheless useful where Korean stories are needed.
Margaret A. Chang, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, North Adams
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kirkus Reviews

An uproarious tangled tale from Han (The Rabbit's Judgment, 1994, etc.) that works, because it retains the natural and spontaneous inventiveness of its folk origins. Long ago when ``tigers smoked pipes and rabbits had long tails'' a tiger wanders into a farmer's barnyard to nab some dinner. Inside, the tiger overhears a mother trying to quiet her wailing baby: first she threatens that a fierce tiger might overhear the noisy child, and then she offers it a bit of dried persimmon to suck on. That quiets the baby, but the eavesdropping tiger comes away with the information that the dried persimmon must be fiercer, scarier, and stronger than he is. Later, a thief who's also casing the barnyard lands on the tiger's back; the tiger is frantic, believing that a dreadful dried persimmon is clinging to his fur. When a skeptical rabbit who hears the tiger's story goes to investigate the monstrous dried persimmon, he also gets a scare and loses his tail. The twists and turns of the plot are conveyed with energy, while Wehrman's conjuring of the persimmon into an all-powerful entity helps readers sympathize with the tiger's fears. A story-hour gem. (Picture book/folklore. 5-9) -- Copyright ©1999, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 25, 1999
Format: Hardcover
As a practicing artist as well as a teacher candidate, I appreciated this book not only for its lovely story from long ago, but also for the outstanding illustrations. The pictures make this book completely. If other forms of pictorials had been used, I would not have been captured by the text alone. The tale is a beautiful legend adapted wonderfully for use as a teaching tool. I found the book outstanding for teaching double-lettered words, as the book is chock full of them. However, I did question some content that would be in need of explanation. Due to the culture location of where the story was read, the reader may not have understanding as to what exactly what a persimmon was, thus putting themselves in the living predicament of the tiger in the story itself. A definite must for a regular classroom, as well as for use in art.
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