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Crow Call by Lois Lowry

Crow Call

by Lois Lowry

Other authors: Bagram Ibatoulline (Illustrator)

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2854139,557 (4.3)6



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Showing 1-5 of 41 (next | show all)
Beautifully written and illustrated. Will be an excellent example of personal narratives for the 7th grader. ( )
  engpunk77 | Aug 10, 2015 |
Occasionally there are children's books that just hit a sweet spot. This one was such a treat and it's hard to even explain why. There are gorgeous illustrations, and a story that's based a the author's real life experiences, but there's no overarching lesson to be learned.

A young girl heads out one morning with her father who has recently returned from World War II. Clad in a big flannel shirt with blonde pigtails,the girl is going crow hunting with her Dad. They stop at a diner for some breakfast and each scene gives us a little more insight into their dynamic.

There's something about the girl that just reminded me of myself when I was little. That tomboyish streak, the desire to be out in nature, I just loved it. Each illustration gave an added layer of depth to the story. They represent the budding relationship between the father and daughter, the understanding the find with few words, etc.

I had the opportunity to hear the author, Lois Lowry, speak in 2010. I grew up adoring her books, The Giver and Number the Stars. She spoke about her life and this was one of the books she discussed. She said this happened to her and she'd always wanted to tell the story in some way. I think she certainly did it justice. ( )
  bookworm12 | May 12, 2015 |
Lois Lowry’s first picture book, “Crow Call,” is an amazing book that I loved reading. The main messages of this story are learning to trust and the importance of family relationships. Lowry conveyed these messages through the use of illustrations, text, and plot.
The illustration, created by Bagram Ibatoulline, genuinely give the reader the opportunity to stay engaged throughout the entire story. Throughout the book, Liz is trying to reconnect with her father who has been fighting in WWII. The situation is awkward and somewhat uneasy for both characters, which the illustrator really captures in the pictures. The details in the pictures give the reader a deeper understanding of the characters’ emotions. AS the story progresses, Liz and her father become more and more comfortable with one another and begin to feel happy, which is also captured very well in the pictures. The illustrations throughout the book truly make it easy for the reader to grasp the story’s message.
Another element used to convey the message was the text, dialogue, and plot. The plot puts Liz in an uncomfortable situation, where she has to spend the day with her father, a man she no longer remembers. The text shows the reader how distant the characters are, which leads to the reader understanding the importance of trust and family. For instance, when Liz gets in her father’s car, the text says, “I practice his name to myself, whispering it under my breath…saying it feels new.” This quote helps the reader visualize how the two are almost complete strangers. The story's setting, which occurs when Liz’s father returns from fighting in WWII, also helps convey the message. This presents the reader with a relatable experience of attempting to reconnect with someone that has been gone for so long, which draws the reader in on a deeper, more personal level. The concept of trust can be seen in the quote, “I want to scamper ahead of him…but there is an uneasy feeling along the edge of my back at the thought of walking in front of someone who is a hunter…carefully I stay by his side.” The word choice the author uses here helps the draw the reader in and makes him or her curious to know what happens next. This engagement helps the reader focus on the story, giving him or her a better opportunity to grasp the main messages.
The story’s plot uses several small situations to show Liz’s character evolve and begin to trust her father. This progression gives the reader the chance to watch the relationship of a daughter and father unfold and redevelop through trust and the excitement of a new adventure. Beautifully written and illustrated, “Crow Call” effectively conveys the messages of learning to trust and the importance of family, through the use of illustrations, text, and plot. Thus, creating an amazing story that is very enjoyable to read. ( )
  heathergoodman | Apr 27, 2015 |
Response - I think this is a lovely, endearing story that reinforces the special bond between a father and daughter. I like learning about WWII, and this book provided a different perspective.

Curricular connection - I would use this book as a read aloud and as part of a unit on relationships or WWII.
  jegammon | Mar 11, 2015 |
This is a story about a little girl named Liz. Liz had not seen her daddy in years because he was in war. She was not used to being around him much less call him daddy. One Morning, she wakes up full of different emotions. She is nervous because she is going hunting for the first time, and it is with her father. The word Hunter scares her, and she really does not want to shoot the crows. After calling the crows, her daddy doesn't shoot them. It makes Liz very happy and more comfortable with the situation. At the end, Liz grabs her fathers hand to walk back! This was a good book, and the illustrations fit the book perfectly. ( )
  kfisher524 | Nov 25, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 41 (next | show all)
Marilyn Courtot (Children's Literature)
The story opens with a young girl heading out on a hunting trip with a father she has not seen for some time. He has been off fighting a war and now he is home. Previously when in town, Lizzie had spied a hunting shirt in a store window. It was a beautiful rainbow plaid, but way to big for such a young girl. No matter, her father made the purchase noting that she would never outgrow the shirt. They stop at a diner and have cherry pie for breakfast--Lizzie’s favorite thing to eat. They discuss the war and his fears--as well as her fears, in particular going hunting. They discuss the cycle of life and how crows eat the crops to survive. In spite of that Lizzie just doesn’t have it in her heart to hunt them. She uses her crow call and they flock to her and surround her. Lizzie says “They think I’m their friend!” Her father refrains from shooting the crows and leaves that for another day or another hunter. Today, he and his daughter walk hand--in-hand and head back home. The illustration by Ibatoulline are evocative of a frosty autumn morning--soft browns with a sky that is just beginning to light up. The trees bare of leaves and mist rising from the hills add a sense of mystery and fear as the two wait to see if the crows will respond to Lizzie’s call. They are a perfect match for the story. Lowry’s story will resonate today as it did back in 1945 when she went through the experience of reacquainting herself with a father who had recently returned from World War II. Today’s children are separated not only from fathers but mothers who head off to places like Afghanistan and Iraq, risking their lives and then having to come home and try to re-establish relationships with family and life in general. As Lois Lowry says on the closing page “And so this story is not really just my story, but everyone’s.” 2009, Scholastic, $16.99. Ages 7 up.
added by kthomp25 | editChildren's Literature, Marilyn Courtot
Ilene Cooper (Booklist, Oct. 15, 2009 (Vol. 106, No. 4))
Starred Review* Drawing on a childhood memory, Lowry offers a story where the specific becomes universal. Lizzie’s father is back from the war, and to her, he is almost a stranger. He doesn’t even know how much she loves cherry pie. But he does understand when she picks out an unconventional adult-size hunting shirt, which at least she won’t outgrow. One cold morning, Lizzie dons her shirt and goes out with Daddy to hunt crows. Crows eat crops; of that there’s no doubt. Daddy has his shotgun. He’s given Lizzie a crow call so she can gather the birds together in the trees. In a subtle dialogue, Lizzie says things without saying the big thing on her mind: “I wish the crows didn’t eat the crops. . . . They might have babies to take care of.” Not wanting to disappoint her father, Lizzie calls the birds until they fill the sky, and then, after a breathless moment, her father, not wanting to disappoint Lizzie, takes her home. Each frame of the story is captured like an old-time movie in Ibatoulline’s tender watercolor and acrylic gouache artwork. Particularly effective is the double-page spread in which father and daughter walk among the leafless trees on that chilly autumn day, when their “words seemed etched and breakable on the brittle stillness.” In the end, words aren’t needed after all. Grades K-3
added by kthomp25 | editIlene Cooper, Booklist

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lois Lowryprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ibatoulline, BagramIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed

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Book description
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0545030358, Hardcover)

Two-time Newbery medalist Lois Lowry has crafted a beautiful picture book about the power of longing and the importance of reconnection between a girl and her father in post-WWII America.

This is the story of young Liz, her father, and their strained relationship. Dad has been away at WWII for longer than she can remember, and they begin their journey of reconnection through a hunting shirt, cherry pie, tender conversation, and the crow call. This allegorical story shows how, like the birds gathering above, the relationship between the girl and her father is graced with the chance to fly.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:56 -0400)

Nine-year-old Liz accompanies the stranger who is her father, just returned from the war, when he goes hunting for crows in Pennsylvania farmland.

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