Spider Sparrow

Dick King-Smith, Author, Peter Bailey, Illustrator Crown Publishers $16.95 (176p) ISBN 978-0-517-80043-0
With pitch-perfect prose, King-Smith unwinds a tale of a baby abandoned in a lambing pen and adopted by a childless shepherd and his wife. From early on, it's clear that Spider is not normal; his nickname refers to the peculiar gait of his early childhood, and he is slow to develop verbal skills. But although some ostracize him and call him ""simple,"" his parents cherish Spider, and he grows into a young man whose gifts are no less valuable for being different. Spider can mimic the sound of any bird or animal, and his affinity with creatures both wild and tame leads him into a number of quiet adventures as well as his calling as ""crowstarver"" (one whose job it is to scare off crows from newly planted fields) at Outoverdown Farm. Blessed with a deep capacity for happiness, Spider is content with his life, and the bittersweet ending is no less wrenching for its inevitability. King-Smith plants the lilting text firmly in the English countryside of WWII, and his folksy characters' conversations brim with authenticity, heightened by occasional bursts of broad country dialect (""Wass think of thik baby of Kath Sparrow's then?""). Poignant and wise, this deeply moving tale is not to be missed. Ages 9-12. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 01/03/2000
Release date: 01/01/2000
X
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
X
Email Address

Password

Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email pw@pubservice.com with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.