Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 4 to 7
- Grade: k to 2
- Reading age: 4 to 7
Funny, fresh and very modern, this update on the fable of the lion and the mouse is a marvelous tale of a relationship between two unlikely friends.
One day, the mouse marches into the lion’s den without an invitation. Before the lion can eat him for breakfast, the mouse begs for mercy. “If you let me go, I might be able to return the favor.” The lion laughs at the idea of such a small, insignificant creature helping him out … until the next day when the mouse frees the lion from a hunter’s trap.
Jairo Buitrago and Rafael Yockteng, one of the great creative teams in picture books, have fun in this simple and never-didactic story about how it’s possible to get along through negotiation, acceptance and learning to put up with a friend’s eccentricities. You can be good to one another not because you expect anything in return but just because you are friends.
Correlates to the Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts:
>With prompting and support, retell familiar stories, including key details.
Retell stories, including key details, and demonstrate understanding of their central message or lesson.
Recount stories, including fables and folktales from diverse cultures, and determine their central message, lesson, or moral.
Acknowledge differences in the points of view of characters, including by speaking in a different voice for each character when reading dialogue aloud.
Recount stories, including fables, folktales, and myths from diverse cultures; determine the central message, lesson, or moral and explain how it is conveyed through key details in the text.
Compare and contrast the point of view from which different stories are narrated, including the difference between first- and third-person narrations.
Compare and contrast the treatment of similar themes and topics (e.g., opposition of good and evil) and patterns of events (e.g., the quest) in stories, myths, and traditional literature from different cultures.
About the authors
JAIRO BUITRAGO is a children's book author who has collaborated with Rafael Yockteng on several picture books, including Jimmy the Greatest! (six starred reviews), Two White Rabbits (three starred reviews), Walk with Me (three starred reviews, Kirkus Prize shortlist), Lion and Mouse (two starred reviews) and most recently, Cave Paintings. They won the "A la Orilla del Viento" contest for the Spanish edition of Walk with Me, which was also named to IBBY's Honor List. Their books have also appeared on "Los mejores libros del año" (Venezuela's Banco del Libro), Kirkus Best Books, the Horn Book Fanfare and in the White Ravens Catalogue. Jairo has also won the Hispanoamericano Castillo prize for children's literature and the Antonio García Cubas Award. He lives in Mexico City.
Rafael Yockteng has illustrated many highly acclaimed children’s books, including Sopa de frijoles / Bean Soup by Jorge Argueta (USBBY Outstanding International Books) and Jimmy the Greatest! (six starred reviews), Two White Rabbits (three starred reviews), Walk with Me (three starred reviews, Kirkus Prize shortlist) and On the Other Side of the Garden (three starred reviews) by Jairo Buitrago. Together, Jairo Buitrago and Rafael Yockteng have won the “A la Orilla del Viento” contest, and their books have been included on IBBY’s Honor List, “Los mejores libros del año” (Venezuela’s Banco del Libro), Kirkus Best Books, the Horn Book Fanfare and in the White Ravens Catalogue. Rafael lives in Bogotá.
- Commended, School Library Journal Best Picture Books
An intelligent glimpse at how a friendship between unlikely candidates might be possible. A stellar addition for all collections.
School Library Journal
Jairo Buitrago’s retelling of the classic fable “The Lion and the Mouse” is likely to have early readers giggling with glee. . . . The entertaining text and superb illustrations combine to spark new life in this old tale of kindness, compassion and friendship.
A grand, morally opulent retelling with a message for our age.