The Wolf, the Duck, and the Mouse

by Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen

A jar of jam, a tablecloth, several pieces of furniture. “You’d be surprised... read more

A jar of jam, a tablecloth, several pieces of furniture. “You’d be surprised what you find inside of a wolf,” says a duck, longtime resident, to a mouse, recently gobbled up, that has joined him in the safe haven of the wolf ’s belly. When the new friends dance it creates a ruckus that sickens the wolf. The sly duck encourages the wolf to eat a few luxuries to ease his upset stomach (“a hunk of good cheese,” “a flagon of wine”). Later, when the wolf narrowly misses a hunter’s bullet, the duck and the mouse decide they must suit up to defend their home; they charge out of the wolf ’s mouth wearing household-item armor to scare away the hunter. In return for saving his life, the wolf grants the two a favor, and you can guess what they ask of him. This droll tale turns the familiar “must escape!” narrative of eaten animals on its head and offers a creative explanation for wolves’ howling at the moon. (Ages 4-8)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2018

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