Sonderbooks

Sonderbooks Book Review of

The Sky Is Falling!

by Mark Teague


Home Stand-outs Blog Gallery Info
The Sky Is Falling!

by Mark Teague

Review posted August 28, 2015.
Orchard Books (Scholastic), New York, 2015. 32 pages.
Starred Review

This book cracked me up. It’s very much in the same style as The Three Little Pigs and the Somewhat Bad Wolf, by the same author.

The book contains a twisted retelling of Chicken Little’s story. Or perhaps I should say a more logical telling of Chicken Little’s story. Kids who are familiar with the traditional tale will appreciate the changes in this one.

And look! The third time through the story, I noticed for the first time a detail on the first page that adds impact to how the story turns out. This is a book that rewards close attention.

The story starts the common way:

One day an acorn hit Chicken Little on the head.

She popped up, screeching,
“The sky is falling! The sky is falling!”

The difference is apparent right away:

“I don’t think so,” said Squirrel.
Squirrel knew a thing or two about acorns.
“See, it fell from a tree.”

But Chicken Little doesn’t pay attention to squirrel.

Soon, all the chickens were in a tizzy.
Chickens are like that.

“The sky is falling! The sky is falling!”
they cried.

They danced around the yard,
flapping their wings.

But in this version, the birds don’t go to tell the king – they start a dance that infects all the animals in the barnyard!

Fox is up to his same tricks, however. If the sky is falling, he thinks everyone should hide in his den.

I love the chicken logic on this page:

“But why aren’t you dancing?” asked Chicken Little.

Fox began to feel annoyed. “Because it makes no sense!”

“Everyone dances when the sky is falling,”
Chicken Little explained. “Look!”

I will simply say about this tale that the fox does get an appropriate comeuppance.

The pictures of the animals dancing their hearts out definitely make it worth your while to pick this book up.

A very silly story which is ever so much fun.