Monday, August 27, 2007

Don't Cry, Lion!

Don't Cry, Lion! pairs two greats in Christian children's literature. Author Dandi Daley Mackall has over 400 titles to her credit. Illustrator Elena Kucharik is best known as creator and lead illustrator for the Care Bears. She also illustrated the entire Little Blessings series and many more.

Don't Cry, Lion! tells the story of Daniel in the lions' den. Using rhyming verse, the story is told from the point-of-view of a tiny lion. He introduces us to a mean lion, Big-Mouth Leo, and tells how frightened he is of him. Being stuck in the den with Leo and a number of other bully lions, the little guy remembers to pray. Just then Daniel is dropped into the pit. Before Leo can reach him, an angel appears and reprimands Leo. Daniel reminds the frightened, little lion: "That bully might be pretty big, but not as big as God." The book concludes with an application: "So when you meet a bully, who is twice the size of you ... Ask God to help you, too!"

The illustrations are detailed and sweet. Because the majority of the book is just about lions in a pit, the colors are mostly yellow, brown and tan. But when opportunity affords, the colors are bright and inviting.

What I Like: The illustrations are fantastic! I also love the application. This is a different angle, one which kids can easily understand and apply. I like the different perspective. While the story takes some creative liberties, it does a great job making this story appeal to young readers. My daughter LOVES this book! We read it several times a day.

What I Dislike: The angel claims Daniel showed Leo how to pray and that's why the lion kept his mouth shut. It seems to make Daniel's safety a result of the lion's decision rather than the protection of God. It's a very small detail, and considering the many other references to God, it detracts very little from the overall value of the book.

Overall Rating: Very Good.

Age Appeal: The publisher says 4-8, but I think even infants would enjoy this book.

Publisher Info: Thomas Nelson, 2007; ISBN: 1400310083; Boardbook; $6.99

Buy it Now at for $5.49!

Additional Info: This book is also available in Spanish! Follow the link to buy it from for $7.49 (retail price: $8.99).

Check out other reviews on CCBR featuring the same author and illustrator.

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