Early Readers – How Elephants Lost Their Wings

Usborne First Readers are very popular here at my library. Kids seem to be particularly attracted to the compact books with their bright colors and traditional story retellings. This particular installment of the series retells an Indian legend about elephants. Apparently elephants once had spectacular wings. But the elephants were very loud and annoying, so the gods took away their wings, and ever since that time elephants have been land-bound.

The story is cute, although slightly less pointed than many other how-so type stories. The gods in the story are never identified by name. I am not familiar enough with Hindu mythology to be able to comment on whether or not the retelling is accurate or culturally sensitive.

The text is simple, and appropriate for an early reader. There are one or two simple sentences on most pages. There is little to no white space on the pages, so the text is superimposed on the colored background. This might make it difficult for visually impaired children to easily view the words.


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