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Why Mosquitoes Buzz in People's Ears (1975)

by Verna Aardema

Other authors: Diane Dillon (Illustrator), Leo Dillon (Illustrator), James Earl Jones (Narrator)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
4,7172652,105 (4.1)18
Reveals the meaning of the mosquito's buzz.

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» See also 18 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 263 (next | show all)
I think that the art in the book is culturally appropriate, which I appreciate because it adds an extra depth when reading the book. I think that the story overall is a great way to teach children on cause and effect and to not spread “fibs” regarding other people/friends. ( )
  Abby_Natalia_Parra | Mar 23, 2023 |
independent reading level: 2nd to 3rd grade
Awards: Caldecott Medal winner ( )
  Starlight_Lattee | Dec 7, 2022 |
Caldecott Medal in 1976
  Caitfowler | Dec 5, 2022 |
This has fun art and loads of animals, but the story fell a bit flat with me. All of the animals, excepting the rabbit, seemed to overreact, and I just don't think the mosquito should have born the burden of the punishment for everyone's absurd behavior. The story could be used to mentor about unintended consequences and overreactions by an engaged adult though. ( )
  Zoes_Human | Jul 29, 2022 |
Based on a West African Folk Tale. Mosquito tells a tale that starts a chain reaction through the jungle and ends with an owlet being killed. The animals all want to know who is to blame. It would be a wonderful piece for teaching cause and effect. The abstract and unique illustrations were inspired by African fabrics with bold, vibrant colors and mosaic-like patterns.
  BainbridgeMom | Jul 28, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 263 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Verna Aardemaprimary authorall editionscalculated
Scholastic Video Collectionmain authorsome editionsconfirmed
Dillon, DianeIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Dillon, LeoIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Jones, James EarlNarratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
For Marcia VanDuinen who heard this story first
First words
One morning a mosquito saw an iguana drinking at a waterhole.
Is everyone still mad at me?
Mosquito told me such a big lie, I couldn't bear to listen to it. So I put sticks in my ears.
I'd rather be deaf than listen to such nonsense!
It was the mosquito's fault
The mosquito said, "I saw a farmer digging yams that were almost as big as I am."
"What's a mosquito compared to a yam?" snapped the iguana grumpily.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS
Canonical LCC
Reveals the meaning of the mosquito's buzz.

No library descriptions found.

Book description
This West African pourquoi tale explains why mosquitoes buzz in people's ears. It all starts with Mosquito telling a lie to Iguana. Tired of listening to Mosquito, Iguana puts twigs in his own ears. When Python tries to talk to Iguana and Iguana doesn't respond to him, it sets off a chain of events that leads to the sun not rising in the morning. King Lion must learn the story of the events leading back to Mosquito's lie in order to get Mother Owl to call the sun. The story is enhanced by beautiful Caldecott winning illustrations.

Available online at The Internet Archive:
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Average: (4.1)
1 4
2 13
2.5 5
3 71
3.5 16
4 179
4.5 20
5 162

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