Author: Bob Graham
Illustrator: Bob Graham
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Audience: Young children ages 5-7
Summary: Will and his mother are out in the city and he sees a bird that has fallen and is injured. Will picks up the bird and takes it home. He and his family nurse it back to health. Once the bird is fully healed, Will releases it back into the world. This is a wonderful book to use with young children to teach the lesson of the parable of the Good Samaritan.
Literary elements at work in the story: Bob Graham sends a strong message to readers with his illustrations. In one double page, Will is the only character in bright colored clothing. All the other people who do not see the injured bird are portrayed in gray colors. The theme of the story is about taking care of all of God’s creatures with love and compassion. Will’s parents are portrayed in the illustrations as being loving and helpful. The care of the bird is truly done by the entire family. The illustrations in this book send a powerful message that goes beyond the words on each page.
Perspective on gender/race/culture/economic ability: The people of our modern day culture are shown to be always in a hurry. Because of this, those who are “hurt” whether animals or people are simply not noticed.
Scripture: Luke 10:25-37, Matthew 25:37-40, Colossians 3:12
Theology: All Christians are called to love others as they love themselves. All earthly creatures were given to us by God and we are called to care for them.
Faith Talk Questions:
- Why does the illustrator show Will in bright colors while everyone around him in the city is in gray?
- Why do you think Will stops to help the bird?
- What is Will’s family like?
- Why do so many other people in the city ignore the injured bird?
- What does this story teach us about how we should care for all of God’s creatures?
Review prepared by Marcia Rauch, MACE, Entering cohort 2006