The Moonbird

The Moonbird

Paperback

By (author) Joyce Dunbar, By (author) Jane Ray, Illustrated by Jane Ray

List price $9.36

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  • Publisher: Corgi Childrens
  • Format: Paperback | 32 pages
  • Dimensions: 260mm x 260mm x 3mm | 201g
  • Publication date: 1 January 2008
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0552550035
  • ISBN 13: 9780552550031
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Illustrations note: chiefly col. Illustrations
  • Sales rank: 186,250

Product description

A Moonchild blows a bubble that pops on an Earth baby and surrounds him in silence. He cannot hear or speak. His parents, a King and Queen, are devastated when they realize but a Moonbird teaches the little prince how to use his hands and eyes to communicate. This is a beautifully written story about deafness, sumptuously illustrated by Jane Ray.

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Author information

Joyce Dunbar is a widely respected author of more than fifty books for children. Her Mouse and Mole series has been very popularly adapted for television and her lyrical re-telling of the Nativity story, This is the Star, received widespread critical acclaim. She has also collaborated with artist Debi Gliori for several picture books for the Doubleday/Picture Corgi list, including Tell Me Something Happy. Joyce is profoundly deaf. Jane Ray was born in Chingford, North East London. After a degree course at Middlesex University in Ceramics and 3-D Design she began her career by designing greeting cards. Jane's first picture book A Balloon for Grandad was shortlisted for the prestigious Mother Goose Prize for first-time book illustrators. Jane's illustration style is instantly recognisable and she is well known internationally. The rights to her books are sold throughout the world and she has gained as much success in America as she has in the UK. Jane lives in London with her husband, a music conductor, and their three children.

Review quote

"A remarkable story" The School Librarian 20070501 "When a book is simple and good by the judgement of children, it is very good indeed. Moonbird is just such an extraordinary work. Across pages which have all the splendour of a medieval tapestry, the deaf prince, like a truth telling child from a Wilde fairy tale, teaches the court new and deeper forms of communication" The Irish Times "A beautiful story about deafness" -- Laura Lee Davies Junior 20061001 "The illustrations by Jane Ray, with their extravagant characters, turreted cities, stylised gardens, decorative creatures, foliage and hairdos are all exquisitely patterned and delicately and ravishingly coloured" The Sunday Times 20060820 "A beautiful book to share with all children" Carousel 20061101

Editorial reviews

From the magical land of the silvery bubble-blowing Moonchild, a bubble popping in little Prince Orla's ear suddenly makes him profoundly deaf. His worried, joyless parents hire several ineffectual fools to restore their son to their hearing world. The most ridiculous looking one is ready to tie elephant-sized ears on the prince's head. The royal soothsayer understands immediately that the child comprehends the world with his eyes, and the soothsayer is commandingly credible, because he wears magical symbols: star, tree and bird. Graceful Moonbird comes to the rescue, flying the prince to a magical school where a gazelle and silver monkey teach him "eye music," and tell him he can teach his parents hand talking and silent mouthing. However, his parents are clueless until Moonchild blows an enormous bubble that bursts over their kingdom, changing their intricate yet barren landscape and their hearts. Ray's luminous art and lyrical text are heavy with symbolism: Those who understand sign language and the powers of observation are adorned in the most silver trees, birds and stars, and others find adornment as they learn. Young readers will understand with help the clear message that sign language education for children who are deaf is essential to their healthy growth, and that it is a tremendous step forward for all people to increase their observation skills to learn it. But this heavy, controversial message won't be swallowed easily. (Picture book. 5-7) (Kirkus Reviews)