Angelo is an architectural restorer in Italy who doesn't really like pigeons since they cause a mess on the beautiful buildings he restores.Then, one day he finds an injured pigeon, scoops it up in his hat, and sets off for home, thinking he will just find a place to leave it on his way home. Instead, he is still carrying it when he gets to his house, so he decides it can stay with him "just one night." He creates a bed for the bird to recuperate in and before long, he's devoting all his spare time to this little bird, which he names Sylvia.
As Sylvia's strength grows, he begins taking her to work with him and on picnics in the countryside. The two continue their friendship over the ensuing years, and Angelo, who worries about Sylvia's well-being after he's gone, even finds a way to build a permanent home for Sylvia in a protected spot of one of his treasured buildings.
What a sweet story! "Although the two part in death, there is enough humor here to relieve the sadness and make this a charming story of an improbable friendship." (School Library Journal) This is an exceptional story for teaching children how giving service to other living things helps to change your perspective on things. A man who once disliked pigeons as a whole grew to love one of them (and in time Syliva's friends too) by an act of selfless service.
Interest Level: all ages DRA Level: 30 Lexile Measure: 570L
Grade Equivalent: 3.8 Guided Reading: N
Below are the first four spreads from inside this unforgettable book:
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