|Song of Delphine
Author: Kraegel, Kenneth
A lonely servant girl finds solace in song in a charming tale of kindness rewarded.
|Accelerated Reader Information:
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 3.80
Points: .5 Quiz: 174166
Kirkus Reviews (02/01/15)
School Library Journal (01/01/15)
Booklist (+) (04/01/15)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 01/01/2015 PreS-Gr 1—Text and watercolor and ink illustrations combine wonderfully in this story of an orphan who serves Queen Theodora in her palace on the savannah. Life is hard for Delphine, and she sings to boost her spirits. When Theodora's niece arrives, Delphine's delight at having someone her own age in the palace is short-lived, for Beatrice is deliberately cruel and blames Delphine for her own misdeeds. Delphine's sad song one evening is heard by 12 giraffes, who carry her across the savannah. When they return her to the palace, however, they mistakenly deliver her to Beatrice's room, where a picture of the princess's deceased mother provides a clue to the girl's behavior. Comforted by Delphine's song, Beatrice speaks to the queen, who then makes Delphine her official singer. As for Delphine and Beatrice, well, those giraffes figure prominently in their future nights together. While the text is fairly brief, much of the story is contained in the illustrations. The giraffes are full of personality, and children will enjoy hunting for them and their companions, from the stunning endpapers done in black ink strokes and dots to the pages within. The scene of Beatrice's arrival trailed by a long line of servants carrying her belongings provides a comical forecast of the girl's haughty personality. The varied illustrations include framed text and scenes, spot art, and the vast savannah depicted on spreads — all meticulously rendered. Don't miss this story of the power of music to bring joy and comfort even in trying times.—Marianne Saccardi, Children's Literature Consultant, Greenwich, CT - Copyright 2015 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 04/01/2015 *Starred Review* Delphine is a young orphan who scrubs floors in Queen Theodora’s palace. When her spirits are low, she looks out across the savanna and sings. The queen’s niece, Princess Beatrice, comes to live at the palace, but the spiteful girl makes Delphine’s life miserable. One night, when the tearful servant sings at her window, a dozen giraffes gather there, carry her across the savanna, and comfort her. The princess’ actions lead the guards to imprison Delphine, whose kind words make Beatrice regret what she has done. Delphine befriends the princess, who is lonely, too, and soon the lowly maid becomes the singer for the queen. The two girls spend many nights outdoors, rambling with the gentle giraffes. Kraegel creates a satisfying, original story and tells it with quiet grace. Throughout the narrative, the characters draw strength from music, from nature, and from the kindness of others, elements of the story that will resonate with adults as well as children. The text works beautifully with the watercolor-and-ink artwork, which includes elements drawn with great simplicity and set against the richly textured backdrop of the savanna. Watercolors are applied with finesse. A quiet yet magical picture book that is just right for reading aloud. - Copyright 2015 Booklist.