The Greedy Sparrow by Lucine Kasbarian
From Kirkus: “In Zaikina's bold, folk-style illustrations, both characters and landscape are heavily outlined in black, and the characters' dialogue is in speech balloons. Pictures are lightened with bright, textured colors (they were made with oil paint and layers of wax) and have an appealing, vigorous heft. Armenian folk attire and references to places in Armenia authenticate the tale. It's a rhythmic read-aloud beginning readers can share.”—Kirkus Reviews, March 1, 2011
From the Press Release:
An Armenian folktale retold by Armenian-American
writer Lucine Kasbarian and illustrated by Moscow-based artist Maria Zaikina debuts with
Marshall Cavendish Children’s Publishers in April 2011.
The Greedy Sparrow: An Armenian Tale is from the ancient Armenian oral tradition and
culture, which was nearly obliterated during the Turkish genocide of the Armenians, Assyrians
and Greeks in 1915. The author learned the tale from her father, editor and columnist C.K.
Garabed, who would recite it to her at bedtime. He had learned it from his own
grandmother, a celebrated storyteller from the Old Country. The tale was first put to paper
by Armenian poet Hovhannes Toumanian at the turn of the 20th
The Greedy Sparrow is the first time this tale has been presented in the English language as a
children’s picture book. The story begins in old Armenia with a sparrow who catches a thorn
in his foot. As he asks for help, he sets off an intriguing cycle of action that transports him
through the Armenian countryside, encountering people engaged in traditional folkways.
The Greedy Sparrow ends with a surprising twist and conveys moral messages about greed,
selfishness and using one’s judgment. To address the ethical and human components of the
tale, a discussion and activity guide is available on the author’s website,
This sounds like a fabulous book and I love folklore! This book counts for the challenge. Let me know if you read it!