Friends in Books


The Blue Bird written and illustrated by Fiona French (Henry Z. Walck).

Jade Lotus had a beautiful blue bird that she kept in a cage. One day the bird stopped singing and eating. Jade Lotus asked her friend Chiang Ti to help her, and together they began a long journey to find the Enchantress. Along the way they met several animal friends that later came to their rescue. When the bird was finally freed, it began to sing once more.

Honschi by Aline Glasgow; illustrated by Tony Chen (Parents’ Magazine).

Honschi was the smallest chickadee in the nest. She was so comfortable there she didn’t want to leave and learn to fly. Although she eventually tried to fly, she was all alone—faced with dangers of being trapped, almost being caught by a large shrike, and learning to endure terrible storms. Honschi eventually found the strength and courage to survive.

From Anna by Jean Little; pictures by Joan Sandin (Harper & Row).

When danger threatened the people of Anna’s country, her father decided to move his family to Canada. Awkward Anna didn’t do anything very well. She couldn’t even read. In the new country, Dr. Schumacher found that Anna had a problem about which no one had even guessed. Anna began to change, and one day she amazed everyone with how special she had become.

The Dancing Stars an Iroquois legend retold and illustrated by Anne Rockwell (Thomas Y. Crowell).

Once upon a time there were seven little brothers who always did everything together. One night as they danced, they heard a beautiful song in the forest and tried to find its source. Soon they had danced away into the sky. The little Indians’ mother wept for them, and the legend tells why the great bear stars are in the sky and why the pine tree reaches for them.

Beauty and the Beast retold by Philippa Pearce; illustrated by Alan Barrett (Thomas Y. Crowell).

A beautiful daughter agreed to live in the Beast’s castle and care for him so that her father’s life would be spared. There was magic and enchantment at the castle. Beauty was rewarded for her kindness and love.

[illustration] From The Blue Bird

[illustration] From Honschi

[illustration] From From Anna

[illustration] From Beauty and the Beast