Early Book Review: The Stone Hatchlings by Sarah Tsiang and Qin Leng

The Stone Hatchlings, written by Sarah Tsiang and illustrated by Qin Leng, is a picturebook scheduled for release on September 1 2012. In this charming picturebook Abby finds two eggs, which her family sees only as stones. she cares for her stone eggs, and when they hatch she cares for the stone chicks, complete with some artistry of her own to give their feathers color other than grey. One morning her birds stop singing, stop eating, and begin loosing their feathers. Abby realizes that her birds are grown now and need to be free, so she lets them fly off.

The Stone Hatchlings is a wonderful story, with illustrations to match, that encourages imagination and nurturing in your readers. Abby has a grand imagination and desire to care for something, and she uses both with remarkable zeal. I really loved the interactions between Abby and her parents, who see two rocks rather than the eggs or birds that Abby sees. the change in perspective Abby has about the rocks after the 'birds' are released is particularly endearing.

The Stone Hatchlings could make a good discussion starter about imagination, caring for animals, and how it is best to release living creatures so that they can be free. the illustrations and words match well, and would be well received read aloud; including in a classroom or a library storytime setting. I think this book would be valuable addition to school and public libraries, as well as personal collections.
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