Monday, September 10, 2007
The Library Lion
The Library Lion by Michelle Knudsen and illustrated by Kevin Hawkes is a wonderful picture book. It has an old-timey look and feel, like a 1950s picture book, although it was published in 2006. One day a lion wanders into the library. Miss Merriweather, the head librarian, doesn't seem to mind as long as the lion follows the rules. Soon the lion is making himself quite useful around the library. The patrons and staff are very pleased, except for Mr. McBee at the circulation desk who thinks that lions do not belong in the library. When Mrs. Merriweather has an accident the lion is forced to break the rules to save her. The moral of the story? Sometimes it's necessary to break the rules, even in the library.
I love the story and illustrations in this book. I also thought that it would be a great book for library media teachers to use to introduce primary students to the library during the first week of school. It's a fun story and also gets across the message that libraries have rules, but sometimes there are reasons for speaking above a hush. I want my future school library to be an orderly place, but also a vibrant and fun one, where students don't always have to whisper. This book could start a good discussion about how students should behave in the library and how this might change depending on the activity at hand.