Abel's Island

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Reviews of Abel's Island (1 review)

5 - Excellent Review

Reviewer:

I had forgotten how witty and complex the writing is in the 100+ pages of this short but great book, "Abel's Island." While emminently enjoyable for upper elementary school readers, particularly those with a penchant for words and language, teachers in Grades 5 - 8 (U.S.) will find the book a rich place to mine for topics to discuss adolescent issues and self-concept. Among them are remaking yourself for the better, resourcefulness, the need for self-sufficiency inspite of wealth, finding your purpose, and a truly beautiful message about fidelity in the expression of how much this mouse-husband loves and misses his wife. Even the highest achieving students would easily find a word-a-page or more that they would not know. The book is illustrated throughout with Steig's touching, yet oddly amusing, pen-and-ink drawings. To top it all off, the book has a wry conclusion. "Abel's Island" would be a gentle introduction to the study of epic stories--from Abel's perspective, his year in the wild and return to civilization has a Homeric quality. On all counts, this is a rich, rich book.<p> Newberry Honor, 1977