Synopses & Reviews
In this profoundly moving fable, the earth & all its creatures are suffering, for the people will not share their Truth, which gives them happiness & power, with those who are different from them. Then one brave Little Girl seeks the wisdom of the ancient Old Turtle, who sees that the people's Truth is not a whole truth, but broken. Old Turtle shows the girl the missing part of the Truth, & the Little Girl returns with it to her people. Then the pieces are brought together, and the broken Truth is made whole at last: You are loved...and so are they. Then the people & the earth are healed.
"From his exquisite animal portraits to the saturated colors, striking interplay of light and shadow and dreamy, memorable images, the artist's work reflects a depth of emotion..." Publishers Weekly
School Library Journal
(December 1, 2003; 0-439-32109School Library Journal
(December 1, 2003; 0-439-32109-3)
Gr 4 Up-A truth falls from the sky and breaks in half. "One of the pieces blazed off through the night sky,/and the other fell to earth in the beautiful land." Several animals discard the broken piece because they feel that "there is something missing." When a human finds it, he is delighted, for it says, "You are loved." He reveals this truth to others "whose faces look like his." They begin to ignore the earth's beauty, to fear those who do not "share their truth," and to fight continually with those "others" who wish to possess it. Finally, a girl who embarks on a difficult journey to seek the advice of Old Turtle helps the people see that there is not just one truth, but "truths all around us, and within us" and that the second half of the broken truth is "And so are they." Muth's watercolor-and-ink illustrations powerfully reflect the moods evoked by the lyrical text. The humans are depicted as black, Giacometti-like silhouettes surrounded by darkness above and below. These same people form a rainbow-hued chain as they begin to see themselves in one another. The beautiful text and illustrations printed on wonderfully thick paper make a lovely package, and while the message, similar to Mem Fox's Feathers and Fools (Harcourt, 1996), is a difficult one for young children to grasp, it is sure to spark discussion among older students.-Marianne Saccardi, Norwalk Community College, CT Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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(November 15, 2003; 0-439-32109-3)
K-Gr. 2. Old Turtle was a phenomenon, and many found its message inspirational. This sequel features the same gorgeous, shimmering watercolors as the earlier book, and, unfortunately, the same pretentious pieties. In a land where every stone was a teacher . . and every tree a ladder to the stars, a truth falls, and breaks into parts. Various creatures find the broken truth, and one, a man, takes its message, You Are Loved, to heart. So do other people, who fear and fight those who are not like themselves and do not share their truth. A little girl comes to Old Turtle to ask how to stop the suffering in the world, and he tells her how to make the truth whole. Next to the broken half, You Are Loved, the child places the rest of the shining truth, which reads And So Are They. Turtle has many fans, so expect an audience for this easy lesson in solving the world's problems. --GraceAnne DeCandido Copyright 2003 Booklist
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(October 27, 2003; 0-439-32109-3)
In this handsome but overwrought sequel to Wood's Old Turtle (illus. by Cheng-Khee Chee), "a truth" falls from the sky and breaks in two. One half vanishes; the other (bearing the words "You Are Loved") is rejected by the animal kingdom because a part of it is missing." A human snaps it up and shares it with those "who spoke as he spoke and dressed as he dressed and whose faces looked like his." Eventually, the humans' faulty "Truth" inspires "anger toward those who were not like themselves," and war breaks out. Finally, a girl asks Old Turtle for help and returns to her people both with wisdom ("Every person, every being, is important, and... the world was made for each of us") and a special stone-the missing half of the broken truth. Repaired, the whole truth forms a golden heart, which reads, "You Are Loved and So Are They." Wood's fulsome prose ("She had... crossed the Mountains of Imagining and the River of Wondering Why, had found her way through the Forest of Finding Out") and heavy-handed message stand out in sharp contrast to the simplicity and subtle lyricism of Muth's (The Three Questions) semi-abstract watercolors. From his exquisite animal portraits to the saturated colors, striking
This profoundly moving fable is an inspirational companion to the timeless beauty of "Old Turtle," in which a young girl seeks the wisdom of the ancient Old Turtle to help her people. Full color.
About the Author
Music, books, and nature are three prominent themes in Woods life. Though he started as a poor reader in elementary school, his second grade teacher, Miss Little, instilled in him a life-long love of books and reading. Raised in a family of musicians, Doug grew up playing violin and piano. In teaching himself to play guitar and banjo, and write songs, he found his own personal form of musical expression.
One of the North Countrys most experienced wilderness experts, Douglas Wood makes his home by the Mississippi River in rural Minnesota.
Jon J Muth has written and illustrated many enchanting picture books, including his Caldecott Honor Book ZEN SHORTS and its sequel, the NEW YORK TIMES bestselling picture book ZEN TIES. Other beloved titles from Jon include THE THREE QUESTIONS, GERSHON'S MONSTER by Eric Kimmel, and THE CHRISTMAS MAGIC by Lauren Thompson. Muth lives in upstate New York with his wife and five children.