The tortoise & the hare

Jerry Pinkney

Book - 2013

Illustrations and minimal text relate the familiar fable of the race between a slow tortoise and a quick but foolish hare.

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Picture books
New York, NY ; Boston : Little, Brown and Company 2013.
First edition
Physical Description
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 25 cm
Main Author
Jerry Pinkney (author)
Other Authors
Aesop (-)
Review by Booklist Review

*Starred Review* After his Caldecott triumph with The Lion & the Mouse (2009), Pinkney returns to Aesop for inspiration, this time setting the familiar story in the American Southwest. The endpapers indicate the race route around a cacti-laden barnyard, and the title page shows our titular competitors setting the challenge, before taking off, cheered on by a group of avid animal spectators. The fable plays out as expected, and Pinkney alternates the action between the tortoise's diligence and the hare's overconfidence. To mark the tortoise's progress, Pinkney unveils the moral of the story cumulatively, beginning with just the word slow and adding another word to the phrase at each milestone, until, at contest's end, the entire phrase slow and steady wins the race celebrates the tortoise's victory. The tortoise sports an engineer's cap and kerchief; the hare, a checkered vest; and most of the other animals, a variety of town and country clothing, adding a note of homespun vibrancy to Pinkney's elegant watercolor paintings. Adjacent to an informative artist's note, we see the hare tying a checkered flag about the tortoise's neck, and the final endpapers depict a victory party. The tortoise may have won the race, but the real winner here is the listening and viewing audience. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Pinkney took home the Caldecott Medal for The Lion & the Mouse, so expect lots of buzz about this companion picture book.--Barthelmess, Thom Copyright 2010 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission. Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

Caldecott winner Pinkney's magnificently illustrated version of this famous fable gives the race the excitement of an Olympic event. On the title page, the hare challenges the tortoise and gives his neckerchief to the fox referee to use for a flag. The setting is the Southwestern desert, and the animal spectators range from bobcat and vulture to field mouse and frog. The hare leaps forth as if shot from a cannon; the tortoise, grim-faced in an engineer's cap and bandanna, plods forward. Iterative text, delivered word by word at tortoise speed, bolsters the story's lesson. "Slow and steady," reads the spread that shows the tortoise making his way through a pond that the hare cleared with one leap. "Slow and steady wins," shows the tortoise lumbering past the snoring hare. "Slow and steady wins the," sees the hare struggling to catch up as the tortoise strides across the finish line. Pinkney's portraits are so lifelike that the animals appear to breathe, and they present a peaceable kingdom in which predators and prey live in harmony. Ages 3-6. Agent: Sheldon Fogelman, Sheldon Fogelman Agency. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved Review by School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 3-Following up on his superb rendition of The Lion & the Mouse (Little, Brown, 2009), Pinkney has created yet another stunning interpretation of a classic tale in this virtually wordless picture book. Endpapers establish the desert setting with a map of the course through the cacti and rocky region of the American Southwest. Tortoise and Hare, each sporting a bandana, are joined by their animal friends at the starting line for the famous race. Fox in his broad-brimmed hat gives them their marks, gets them set, and off they go as Hare bounds away, leaving Tortoise behind in a trail of dust. Pinkney uses watercolor, colored pencil, and pastel paintings to create vibrant characters that are in colorful contrast to the tans and natural browns of the desert. Long horizontal lines and Hare leaping off the page propel the story-and the race-ever forward. The limited text, used sparingly but extremely effectively, reinforces the theme of the story-that the journey is as important as the ultimate goal-and builds one word at a time: "slow," "slow and," "slow and steady" until finally the race is won to the cheers and high-fives of the supportive spectators. Pinkney takes care to show Tortoise overcoming challenges and Hare demonstrating good sportsmanship and healthy competition. An artist's note explains the creative process and motivation for retelling the well-known tale. This spectacular success is certain to become a classic in its own right.-Kristine M. Casper, Huntington Public Library, NY (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. Review by Horn Book Review

In a worthy follow-up to his Caldecott-winning The Lion the Mouse (rev. 11/09), Pinkney brilliantly illustrates another well-known Aesop fable. Like its nearly wordless predecessor, this one, too, requires readers to interpret the pictures, as the hare famously challenges the tortoise to a race and then naps through the better part of it. Tortoise's plodding journey across a desert landscape shows a host of critters native to the American Southwest cheering him on, including a bobcat, peccary, Gila monster, alligator, packrat, and vulture. All of the animals wear hats, bandanas, or vests, and in his author's note Pinkney tells us he made this choice so they would stand out, rather than blending in with their environment as they do in the real world. The tortoise himself wears a blue engineer's cap and red bandana in what may be an homage to an earlier work illustrated by Pinkney, John Henry (rev. 11/94). The richly detailed illustrations are lively and humorous, but what makes this retelling particularly ingenious is Pinkney's use of the oft-quoted moral in a cumulative progression both to recount the action and provide dramatic tension: "Slow / slow and / slow and steady / slow and steady wins / slow and steady wins the / slow and steady wins the race!" kathleen t. horning (c) Copyright 2013. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. Review by Kirkus Book Review

With luminous mixed media pictures, a short, carefully meted-out text and a Southwestern U.S. setting, Pinkney (The Lion and the Mouse, 2009) takes on another of Aesop's fablesmarvelously. A persevering tortoise and a speedy but arrogant hare tackle a challenging race course that includes rocky elevations and a water crossing. When a farmstead's cabbages tempt the hare, he tunnels under a fence to gorge and nap. Meanwhile the tortoise, closely observed by desert denizens, passes the slumbering hare and wins by a length. In the tortoise's scenes, the fable's moral inches along, like him: The first proclaims "SLOW"; the second, "SLOW AND"and so on, with the victory spread featuring the entire moral. The ingenious layout mixes bordered panels, spot illustrations and full-bleed single- and double-page spreads, arranged to convey each racer's alternating progress through a golden landscape. Bejeweled with blooming cactuses and buzzing with bees, reptiles, mammals and more, the desert tableaux will engross readers. The critters' bits of clothinghat, bandanna, vestadd pops of color and visually evoke the jaunty characters of Br'er Rabbit stories. Hare's black-and-white checked neckerchief does duty as the signal flag and Tortoise's victory cape. Lush, encompassing endpapers feature, in the front, a layout of the racecourse and, in the rear, the reveling animals, with the hare, still stunned, gazing out at readers. A captivating winnerstart to finish! (artist's note, design notes) (Picture book/folktale. 3-6)]] Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.