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Comment: Used condition with normal wear. Ancillary/bonus materials may not be included. Ex-library with standard markings.
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How to Heal a Broken Wing Hardcover – August 26, 2008

4.9 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Kindergarten-Grade 2—Poignantly told and visually rich, this narrative flies high. When a pigeon breaks its wing, no one notices except Will. Sporting a bright red jacket, starkly contrasted against his drab surroundings, he and his parents take the injured creature into their home. Clean lines and effective panels showcase its steady recovery, readily receiving encouragement from the family along the way. Graham's succinct text masterfully reveals the bird's resilience. "A loose feather can't be put back/but a broken wing can sometimes heal." Pen, watercolor, and chalk illustrations add depth to this tender tale as the injured bird wistfully watches a flock of flyers outside Will's window. Exemplary use of color and perspective denote shifting moods, and thin lines enhance the vulnerability of this boy and his bird. Gently expressed and honestly delivered, this quiet, yet powerful story provides young readers with an affirming conclusion.—Meg Smith, Cumberland County Public Library, Fayatteville, NC
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From Booklist

*Starred Review* Quietly, effectively, Graham tells the simple story of a boy who finds a fallen bird and nurses it back to health. The text is minimal. In a busy city, “No one saw the bird fall.” But a little boy walking with his mother spies the injured bird and brings it home. Up until this point, the art has effectively utilized the oversize format, filling it with full-page pictures, vertical and horizontal strips, and cartoon-style boxes in cloudy hues. At the moment the boy lifts the bird, Graham slows the story and offers a two-page spread full of bright, hopeful colors and an intense focus on the boy with the bird in hand. Turn the page and both mood and perspective change once more. Now the pages are full of people, walking, biking, rushing, while in an upper corner of the spread, encircled in a glow, readers find boy and bird; the unspoken, unwritten message is clear. Who cares in such a large place if a small pigeon falls? One child does. Although the rest of the story is a little anticlimactic, there is a satisfying reality to it as the bird is bandaged, heals, and is set free. Because this is such a visual piece, however, readers, young and old, will return to the story to look more deeply; they won’t be disappointed. Preschool-Grade 1. --Ilene Cooper
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 2
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick; First Edition edition (August 26, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763639036
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763639037
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.4 x 12.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #32,775 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
The premise is simple. A young boy, Will, finds an injured bird unnoticed by everyone else in the big city. He and his mother take it home to nurse it back to health, and with a lot of love, care, and hope, the bird flies again. The text is sparse, yet powerful, and the soft and richly detailed illustrations of Will caring for the bird add an inspirational and heartwarming tone.

But what is best about this book is that it's about much more than a boy caring for an injured bird. It's about hope, dedication, healing, recovery, and beating the odds. But don't worry...the beauty of the book is that it does not contain "in-your-face" messaging. It's subtle yet powerful for those who may be seeking a little comfort. I shed a tear or two reading the book and would recommend giving it to anyone who has had or is going through a rough patch in their lives. This is one of the books that I think should be in everyone's library, not just a child's library. I highly highly recommend it!
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Format: Hardcover
It was the city and no one ever seems to notice anything there because with their fast paced lives they didn't have the time and so when the little pigeon injured himself flying into a glass window, no one noticed . . . except Will. He was trying to reach for the bird, but his mother appeared to be trying to hold him back. He finally got to him and his mother helped wrap him in a scarf to take him home.

You can't put back a feather, but sometimes a broken wing can be healed. Mom and Dad carefully placed the pigeon in a box. The pigeon had a splint on his wing. Will was going to count down the days on his calendar, but would the bird get better? Only time would tell and then he would know if the bird would ever fly again.

This charming and heartwarming book is a Red Clover nominee for the 2009-10 academic year. The dialogue is minimal, but the detailed artwork relays this story to the heart much more than any words could convey. The only thing left out is a rocking chair and a young child to share this lovely book with!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is hands-down one of my favorite pieces of children's literature for any age. I taught second grade but have used this book with kids and adults of all ages. I am passionate about teaching compassion and kindness, aiming to gently nudge people toward thinking more outward. That begins with awareness. This book demonstrates that perfectly and becomes the "hook" I use to set the tone of compassion in my classroom as we all strive to be "good noticers" like the boy in this book. You can't do something kind for someone unless you are paying attention. That mindset can only come as a result of humility and a slow, intentional way of moving through life.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Have you ever seen a bird with a broken wing and wanted to help it? That is exactly what happens in the story How to Heal a Broken Wing written and illustrated by Bob Graham. In our opinion this book will make you happy.
In the story a boy named Will goes into the big city with his mom. They see a bird laying on the sidewalk with a broken wing. Will stops his mom from walking and together they gently pick up the bird and bring it home to heal its wing. You will have to read the book to find out what happens to the bird.
Our favorite parts of the book involve Will caring so much for this bird. Our least favorite part is near the beginning when the city people do not care for the bird. The people were busy and walked with their heads up. Nobody even noticed the poor bird with the broken wing, except for Will!
There are very few words in the book but the illustrations help tell the story. They are colorful and filled with details. The illustrations help reveal the true meaning of the book which is to show compassion to all living creatures.
This book is a must for every reader. We recommend this book for ages 7 and older! We rate this book 5 out of 5 stars!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I fell in love with this story the first time I read it. After many readings to my young students, this book still creates feelings of emotional attachment and caring for these amazing birds that share our city with us. I live in Queens and the wonderful illustrations of the city, especially lower Manhattan, make the setting of this book very personal. Pigeons are everywhere, but humans hardly notice them, because the species has adapted so well to our urban environment. I want all the children to whom I read this book to identify with the little boy and the pigeon. I hope that the message to all of us is that caring for the natural world surrounding us is essential to our humanity and survival. A great story for Earth Day or any day.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This was a great story with a nice theme about caring for God's creatures - I purchased this to read to my 3rd grade catechism class - it was a bit hard reading to a large group - it loses a bit of it's meaning if everyone can't see the illustrations.- the art uses gray and dark tones too highlight the important parts - probably a better story to read one on one - if reading to a class be prepared to describe the pages.
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Format: Paperback
This poignant book tells the story of young Will and his parents, who find a hurt pigeon outside the subway and bring it home to care for it until it can fly again. The story is deceptively simple, but is presented with a depth of empathy that provokes reflection.

It isn't quite a wordless book, but artistically it's as good as one. Graham tells his story primarily through a skillful handling of perspective, color, and light, with comic-strip style inset frames to move story events along. His artistic style is reminiscent of Peter Spier's, with clean lines, simple colors, and good attention to human detail. His crowd scenes are large, filling the page with the masses of anonymous humanity, but each of his figures has a personality distinct from the others.

The story's greatest appeal may come from its gentle, nurturing family unit. Their warmth and security are conveyed through the parents' body language, the juxtaposition of their small home against the city skyscrapers, and the furnishings of their home, lined with child-bookcases, toys and child-art. They are supportive, generous, and compassionate, and their love overflows to the small creature temporarily sheltered in their home.

There is also a beautiful theme of taking responsibility for the creatures in our world, even in the heart of the big city. This will resonate with families who are passionate about biblical environmental stewardship (Genesis 1:28). The thought probably wasn't in the mind of the author, but a child who has read this book will bring a fresh understanding to Jesus' words about how God cares for even the most insignificant birds (Matthew 10:29-31). It's probably best for a preschool and early-elementary audience.
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