May 18, 2011

Calvin Can't Fly

Calvin Can't Fly: The Story of a Bookworm Birdie

Calvin Can't Fly: The Story of a Bookworm Birdie by Jennifer Berne
Illustrated by Keith Bendis

     Calvin is a little black bird, a starling.  He has many brothers and sisters and over sixty thousand cousins...a very big family.  From the moment he was born, there was just something different about Calvin.  While his brothers, sisters and cousins were discovering worms, grass, dirt and water, Calvin discovered books.  While the rest of his family learned to chase beetles and bugs, Calvin was learning to read.  While they dreamed of insects, he dreamed of adventure stories. And while they were learning to fly, Calvin was in the library letting his mind soar and reading about science, history and legends.  His relatives make fun of him and call him "nerdy birdie", "geeky beaky" and "bookworm."
     The weather starts getting cold and the starlings begin migrating south. Since he missed all the flying lessons  while being in the library, Calvin can't fly. So his relatives tie him up to strings so they can carry him.  On their way south, they encounter a bad storm and Calvin uses all his learned in books about weather to direct them to take shelter.  He saves all their lives and they all celebrate together.  Calvin was so happy that amidst the celebration he starts flapping his wings and learns to fly.
     Calvin Can't Fly: The Story of a Bookworm Birdie is a wonderful tale to share with all book lovers.  While Calvin can't fly, his books take him places his wings never could.  This books should be in every single classroom library in the lower grades.  The illustrations are funny, beautiful and have plenty of images of classic themes that all young readers will connect with (pirates, dinosaurs, planets...basically, every single thing my four year old loves).  Great find!

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