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All the birds have an egg, but there's something odd about Duck's...
When Duck finds an egg of his own he's delighted: it's the most beautiful egg in the world! But all the other birds think it's a very odd egg indeed and everyone's in for a BIG surprise when the egg hatches. Children and adults alike will love the witty outcome and Emily Gravett's playful watercolour and pencil illustrations.
"This is the story of a drake who is feeling left out. "All the birds had laid an egg. All except for Duck." When he finds a huge, green-spotted egg, he loves it right away. Sitting high atop it-so high that he barely fits into the picture-he is subjected to the taunts of the egg layers: "Not pretty." "It'll never hatch!" "Ha ha!" Gravett uses narrow pages that gradually increase in size to reveal all of the other eggs hatching, from the smallest chick to the tallest flamingo. While the moms cuddle their new hatchlings, Duck waits-and waits. Leaning against the large egg, he knits up a storm until "Creak Crack, SNAP": out pops an enormous alligator, scaring all of the scoffing birds right off the page. The final, priceless illustration shows an adoring alligator marching-in four knitted slippers and a muffler-behind Duck, murmuring, "Mama." There are many aspects of the story that make it worth adding to the what-have-I-hatched collection. First, it's so simple that toddlers can enjoy it. Second, the layout is unique and well suited to the plot. Third, the illustrations are a joy to behold: funny, personable, and oh-so-eye-catching. The ecru background on every page is a nice touch, lending the book a little extra cachet. Kids will love cracking the pages of this exceptional story."-Susan Weitz, School Library Journal
"This simple plot, illustrated in delicately winsome pencil and buoyant watercolor, will make readers jump at the upshot-and return to be startled again. "All the birds," including a chicken, an owl, a parrot and a toweringly elegant flamingo who doesn't fit on the page, have laid their own eggs-except Duck, who peers curiously below his balletically hoisted leg at the empty spot where an egg should be. When he finds one and adopts it, the others taunt him, a la Ruth Krauss and Crockett Johnson's classic Carrot Seed: " ‘Ha Ha!' ‘It'll never hatch!' " In a series of lengthening pages (the smallest being two inches from gutter to edge), all the other baby birds hatch while expectant Duck patiently knits. Creamy backgrounds and gentle colors don't mute the shocker of just who Duck's hatchling turns out to be as it shoots leftward out of its egg and across the spread, scattering birds everywhere. Endpapers show baby sporting a knitted scarf and booties, adoringly following proud (male) "mama" Duck. A gem of persistence and sweetness." (Picture book. 3-7) Kirkus Reviews
Emily Gravett is twice winner of the Kate Greenaway Medal and the Nestlé Children's Book Prize Bronze Award for her debut picture book Wolves and Little Mouse's Big Book of Fears. An author/illustrator of unique talent and tremendous skill, she has a host of other award-winning and critically acclaimed books to her name, including: Orange Pear Apple Bear and Monkey and Me. Emily lives in Brighton with her partner and their daughter.
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