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Crow Call Hardcover – Oct 1 2009

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic Press; 1st (first) edition (Oct. 1 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0545030358
  • ISBN-13: 978-0545030359
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 26.7 x 27.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 431 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #169,959 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

About the Author

Lois Lowry has written many books beloved by children and adults alike. Her books have garnered countless honors and awards. A two-time recipient of the Newbery Medal for her novels Number the Stars and The Giver, Lois Lowry conveys through her writing her passionate awareness of caring for one another in a complex world. Ms. Lowry lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

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Customer Reviews

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By Steven R. McEvoy HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on Oct. 13 2009
Format: Hardcover
Lois Lowry is one of only two children's authors to ever win two Newbery Medals. Her Giver trilogy (Giver, Messenger and Gathering Blue) is used in school curriculums all over North America. This new story is wonderfully told and amazingly illustrated. The artwork is vivid and realistic, almost a cross between Norman Rockwell and Alex Colville. The story is that of a young girl out for the day with her father, a father she doesn't really know, for he has just returned from the war. They have gone to hunt crows that are eating the crops. The story is about parents and children getting to know each other. In that sense it is truly universal, which is the best kind of story. Lowry shares in the afterward that this is a true story; it happened to her. This is an amazing book and can be shared with many.
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Format: Hardcover
Crow Call is a children's story filled with nostalgia and longing, inspired by true events from the author's own life--a young girl getting to know the father she missed during the war. From its beautiful sepia 1940's illustrations to its post-WWII setting, this book is the perfect grandparent / child read. It will stir memories and allow for discussions of an era when children had fathers who went away at war for a long time, sometimes years.

It's a story that's worth reading more than once for both parents and children to grasp the universal message--appreciate the value and simple beauty of spending time together. At first my 8 year-old daughter wondered why it ended as it did since she was expecting more regarding the crow call, which really is symbolic. My 5 year-old son remarked on the detailed two-page spread illustration of a quiet November forest, the bare limbs of the majestic trees intertwined together in an intricate pattern. He was absolutely right that the artist is gifted.

This book reminded me of the special relationship between a little girl and her daddy. It is a lovely picture book.
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Format: Hardcover
i chanced upon this picture book in my local book store was was surprised to see that i was by lois lowry, who i know for writing thought provoking young adult novels such as the giver and gathering blue. this book was like neither of those, but was still a wonderful story.

this book is an auto-biography of lowry's childhood with her father. her father went to war when she was young, so when he came back she didn't really know him. this story is about her father taking her on a hunting trip of sorts so that they can get to know each other. the storytelling is wonderful, the prose is rich and descriptive. it is a book for children and it has great illustrations, but the way in which the author tells the story is almost poetic in the thorough descriptions of the surroundings and the main character's feelings throughout the story. the quality of writing is a rare find for a children's book.

the story is also pretty good. the girl wakes up early because her father is taking her on a hunting trip. she is wearing an over-sized man's hunting shirt that her father bought her. her father gives her the job of calling the crows so that he can shoot them. as they get closer to the spot she grows more and more uneasy about being a 'hunter' and killing these birds, but in the end she just ends up enjoying being able to communicate with the birds and her father just sits back and lets her have fun and no birds are shot that day.

this is a good book for kids who are missing a parent because he or she is away, either to a war or even on away on business a lot. it's a really touching story, i recommend.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa5a41fcc) out of 5 stars 21 reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa5b8d03c) out of 5 stars Sbtle and stunning Feb. 10 2010
By Melanie B - Published on
Format: Hardcover
The story is powerful but understated, so that it's depths might be easy to miss if you aren't paying attention. It's told in the small details. Its power is in much of what goes unsaid and undone. So many moments had me on the point of tears.

This is the story of a father back from the war who has been gone so long he's become a stranger to his little girl. He doesn't know her favorite food is cherry pie, which he would if he'd been there... mama put candles on a pie for her last birthday. He's trying to reconnect so he takes her hunting with him, a special day for the two of them, inspired perhaps by her yearning for a hunting shirt she'd seen in a store window. But she is a little frightened by this stranger with a gun, a hunter, by the potential for violence she senses in him. In the most moving exchange she asks him if he's ever scared and he confesses that when he was away in the war he was; but now he is not afraid, he's the pillar of strength that his daughter can rely on. He understands her fears, however. And so, though he explains to her the necessity of killing the crows to protect the crops and addresses her concerns about the baby crows (long grown up and forgotten by their parents), he still refrains from shooting them that day.

The ending only seems anticlimactic if you've missed the undercurrents of emotion that make his restraint a remarkable gift to his daughter. The story shows how he's been desensitized from violence by the war and how she re-sensitizes him. It is deep and momentous, a shift from being a man of war to a man of peace. A poignant
moment in which the daughter becomes her father's teacher.

The book is full of warmth and humor. The joke the father and daughter share when the waitress mistakes her for a boy, the variety of other calls they make for each other: a cow call (moo), a bear call (grrr)... a giraffe call (no noise, just an outstretched neck). The illustration shows the father stretching out his neck with a hilarious giraffe expression on his face.

The story is beautiful enough to stand on its own; but the gorgeous illustrations, inspired by Andrew Wyeth, tel a story all on their own, could stand without the text. They create setting and a mood, dark somber autumnal; but also wonderful characterization. The interchanges between the father and daughter, the subtle expressions on their faces that reveal humor, fear, trust are conversations in themselves that need no words.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa5b8d090) out of 5 stars This is a heartwarming tale that any child or parent who have been separated from one another can relate to! Jan. 11 2010
By Deb - Published on
Format: Hardcover
The sun was just beginning to peek through the curtains in Lizzie's bedroom window. Her bed was rumpled with sleep, but it was a special day for her and she was up early. Her sister Jessica was still asleep as she and her father got ready to drive away in the car. He'd been away for so long he seemed like a stranger and she tentatively turned to him asking, "Daddy, I've never gone hunting before. What if I don't know what to do?" He decided that her job would be to use the crow call and told her that her special shirt would help. When her father bought her the shirt, her sister Jessica was disgusted, saying "that's a man's shirt." It was a beautiful rainbow plaid, something she would treasure and never outgrow. It was hers when Daddy saw that wondrous look on her face.

Lizzie and her father stopped off at the diner before heading off to their hunting expedition. She was a little less tentative now and because he had been gone off to war so long they had to get to know one another again. He asked her what her favorite thing to eat was and before you know it, there were two pieces of cherry pie before her. The waitress thought she was a boy because her braids were tucked in the special shirt, but her Daddy knew. Soon they were in the dusky forest walking a path between the leafless trees. It was almost time to use the crow call, but Lizzie was anxious to find out more about this long absent father. Would Lizzie rediscover the love in her heart she once had for this man she hesitated to call Daddy?

This is a beautifully told tale about a father and daughter, once separated by war, who needed to learn to love each other again. When I read the story the apprehension that Lizzie felt was almost palpable. For children who are separated from their parents and later reunited, it can be a stressful feeling. I loved the little connections in the story that Lizzie's Daddy made with her. Each one showed this little girl that he really knew who she was and loved her dearly. According to the author "The details of this story are true." The stunning artwork meshes perfectly with this story. It is a heartwarming tale that any child or parent who have been separated from one another can relate to.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa5b8d4c8) out of 5 stars exquisite book Dec 10 2009
By Kirsten G. Cutler - Published on
Format: Hardcover
A sensitive and lyrical text, "even the occasional leaf that falls within our vision does so in silence, spiraling slowly down to blend in with the others" is beautifully interpreted in realistic watercolor and acryl-gouache illustrations. Based on Lois Lowry's own childhood experience, this exquisite picture book reveals how a young girl gets reacquainted with her father who has just returned from soldiering overseas during World War II. They take a walk in their small town, and visit the local diner that is wonderfully rendered to capture the feel of the forties in muted sepia colors. The father displays an exceptional understanding of his daughter's need to buy a man- sized flannel shirt she sees in a store window; a shirt that will surround her and keep her safe and warm on their forthcoming hunting trip. As they begin their walk through the countryside with the man carrying his gun, the young girl is not quite sure she trusts her daddy, the hunter. The child poignantly asks her father if he was ever scared during the war and he answers honestly yes; then she confesses to being a little scared and she does not even have to specify what she is afraid of. He teaches her to call the crows so he can shoot them, but pretty soon she is running around and laughing as they swarm around her. Her father also smiles and ends up not using his gun at all. By the end of the book, the young girl is holding hands with her daddy. The illustrator has a great skill in portraying people: the various individualized faces are distinct. One unusual illustration shows the little girl and her father traveling in the front seat of their vehicle: their faces stare dramatically at the reader out of the front windshield.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa5b8d894) out of 5 stars A beautiful book Nov. 7 2009
By JK - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Crow Call will join the ranks of the Each-of-Our-Children-Must-Have-a-Copy-of-This books, that include such treasures as When Jessie Came Across the Sea, An Orange for Frankie, and The Yellow Star (an incident by the way which our son's Danish Grandmother-in-Law remembers and says IS a true story). My sisters will also be touched by the copies I am giving them at Christmas, as we lost our "war dad" in the springtime. A beautiful book for both the eyes and the soul!
HASH(0xa5b8d840) out of 5 stars Stunning illustrations! Dec 10 2009
By J. Grambo - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Liz's dad has been away at war for a long time. "I practice his name to myself, whispering it under my breath. Daddy. Daddy. Saying it feels new. The war has lasted so long." She is glad he is returning, but she is unsure how to act, how to talk to him.

On a morning soon after his return, her father takes her out for a daddy-daughter getting-to-know-you time, including cherry pie for breakfast at a rural diner. Dad must ask his young daughter what her favorite food is. He doesn't know, but he wants to learn about her. On a hike through the winter woods, there is no hugging, no dad's arm resting on little daughter's shoulders. The relationship is still too new, and a little tentative.

With spare prose and kindness, Newbery winner Lois Lowry leads us through the tender, awkward experience of getting to know someone you had once loved. Illustrator Bagram Ibatoulline (The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane) matches Lowry's tone with lean, angular trees and stark outlines of black crows against the winter sky. The underlying tenderness of both father and daughter's feelings toward each other is portrayed in their soft, lifelike portraits; they've been thrust into this awkward, cold winter woods of life, and are hoping to break through and find each other again. In the end, they reach out, and hold hands on the return path through the woods.

The illustrations, reminiscent of Andrew Wyeth, are a perfect match for the hopeful and loving story. Hurry and buy this book today. You won't find another treasure like this for a long time.