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Summary: Whenever he's alone, Little Crab says the magic words and his Magic Eyes pop out of his head and explore the deep, deep ocean. Then Jaguar discovered Little Crab's game. He bullied Little Crab into using his Magic Eyes to let Jaguar explore the sea. Once was not enough, and despite Little Crab's warnings, Jaguar went back to the ocean floor, only to be eaten by an Oonkaloonka fish! When he got back to shore, Jaguar couldn't see anymore. Now he had to rely on Vulture to help him. Would he agree to the terms? This is a bilingual version (English and Chinese) of a Brazilian folktale. It comes with an audio version, too.
Type of Reading: bedtime story, playtime reading, read aloud book.
Recommended Age: read together: 1 to 6; read yourself: 7 to 9
Interest Level: 1 to 7
Age of Child: Read with 10-year-old child.
Young Reader Reaction: Our child could see trouble coming, and guessed that Jaguar would be eaten by the "whale." She was surprised about Jaguar losing his eyes, though. Now when we're traveling and see a vulture, she reminds us of this story.
Adult Reader Reaction: This is a very clever tale. It reminds me of an Aesop's fable, but it has a couple of twists and turns in it that even I didn't see coming. This isn't a story I knew, and it was fun to share it with my daughter.
Pros: Colorful, simple illustrations; the magic "eye sailing" game; and a great moral make this a fun book to share with children.
Borrow or Buy: Borrow. This is a beautiful book and very well presented. Unlike many folktales this one doesn't bog you down with a lot of words, and there is plenty to explore with the illustrations.
Educational Themes: Like all classic folktales, there are lessons to be learned. This story has several layers to it - bullying, acceptance, cooperation, listening - that will come out at different times, depending on the age of your child.
Notes: The author donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.