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Lost! A Story in String

by Paul Fleischman
Illustrated by C.B. Mordan

Published by Henry Holt, 2000
32 pages
ISBN: 0-8050-5583-5

Age 5 and older

When the lights go out during a summer electrical storm, a grandmother tells her granddaughter a story about a brave, resourceful girl's rescue of her pet dog during a blizzard. The actual story in the book is illustrated with two kinds of ink drawings: one set showing the girl's rescue efforts and another showing how Grandma illustrates her story with a series of "cat's cradle" string figures. This dual form of illustration makes it possible for the book to reach two distinct audiences -- the younger listeners for whom the book will function as an adventure story, and older readers who will be interested in trying out the string figures themselves. Directions for making the specific string figures are given in diagrams at the end of the book. Fleischman, a skilled string-figure storyteller himself, provides great practical advice about making a string to work with - yes, there's a trick to that, but it's an easy one - and about Cat's Cradle figures in general. He suggests several Cat's Cradle books for young readers to find at the public library and use all summer - and during the winter, too! Just keep a string in your pocket, and you're all set once you learn the figures with which to tell this story and others, too. CCBC categories: Activities; Easy Fiction. (GMK; July 24) 2000 Cooperative Children's Book Center

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