The Big Bell and the Little Bell illustrated by Alastair Graham

Well done. It is time to ring the dinner bell and have a feast with The Big Bell and the Little Bell. Alistair Graham’s visual interpretation of the Martin Kalmanoff song is simple, yet complex. From cover to cover, Graham’s skills and imagination are showcased in the carefully crafted cats that bring the song to life.
As a matter of fact, the characters that propel the story surpass both bells in terms of personality. While the bells remain rather plain (and most bells are, right?) the king and his company are focused on his upcoming wedding.

Readers will enjoy the book even more thanks to the included CD that contains two well-produced versions of the song. After listening to the song one may find a different rhythm for reading the book, and that is just fine. It is musical, lyrical, and fun-filled. It should be shared aloud with a small or large group. Teachers should make this selection a part of their classroom libraries and listening centers. Rich activities lie beneath the surface of this book just waiting to address social skills and group dynamics. Public and school librarians should also give due consideration to acquiring and highlighting this timeless story.

5 out of 5

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