This book is adorable! Graham's illustrations are powerful and moving and the message is both sweet and thought-provoking. In the story, a little boy is walking with this mother on a busy street and suddenly notices an injured pigeon lying in the midst of the commotion. Apparently no one has noticed except young Will. With the help of his mother, Will brings the bird home and carefully nurses it back to health.
It's quite a simple story, but "the unspoken, unwritten message is clear. Who cares in such a large place if a small pigeon falls? One child does." (Booklist) Children will come away with the affirming message that each living thing matters and that an individual who performs a selfless act of service can make a difference.
This book won the Charlotte Zolotow Award in 2009 and was named a School Library
Journal Best Book of 2008. In a
starred review, School Library Journal
called it "poignantly told and
visually rich." Booklist
gave this wonderful book a starred review, promising that "readers,
young and old, will return to the story to look more deeply."
Interest Level: Kindergarten - 2nd grade
Here are some sample spreads from about midway through How to Heal a Broken Wing. Graham's pen, watercolor, and chalk illustrations are sweet and memorable. School Library Journal put their finger right on the magic of these illustrations when they pointed out that Graham's use of "thin lines enhance the vulnerability of this boy and his bird" and his "exemplary use of color and perspective denote shifting moods."
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