Monday, January 19, 2009

Alle seine Entlein - the unusual story of a fox and his ducks

What a funny story this is! Konrad, a very hungry fox, plans to "get to know" a duck sitting on an egg in her nest. The duck manages to escape in a flutter of feathers and quacking and Konrad is left with the egg. He decides to take it home to make scrambled eggs. Just as he's getting ready to eat, a little duckling hatches out of the egg. So begins a long and unusual friendship.

"Ich hab's!"
Vor Freude hob Konrad das Entchen hoch, das sich nitfreute.
"Dich fress ich später, wenn du dick und rund wie ein Luftballon bist."
Und weil er gerade an luftballons dachte, warf er das Küken hoch und fing es wieder auf, was dem noch mehr gefiel.
At first, Konrad decides to wait until Lorenz, the duckling, is a bit bigger - if he eats it right away, he'll feel terrible and he'll still be hungry. But of course he grows to love the duckling and finds he can't bear to eat it. When the duck gets a bit older and falls in love with a duck named Emma, Konrad decides he will wait until Emma is a bit bigger (and juicier). Lorenz and Emma are sure to have a fight and then Konrad can eat Emma without breaking Lorenz' heart. So Emma moves in with them and they all grow to love one another as it should be in a family. A sweet story, sometimes funny, sometimes bittersweet, and with a peaceful ending.

Colorful illustrations with tons of personality bring Konrad and the ducks to life. While some pages do have quite a bit of text, beginners in German should be able to get by with a bit of extra explanation. You may find it helpful to read the book in 2 sittings if it proves too long.

Recommended for German speakers, beginner level and up, ages 4 and up.

This book has been nominated for and won several prizes:
Nominiert für den Deutschen Jugendliteraturpreis 2008 (German Youth Literatur Prize)
Empfehlungsliste des Katholischen Kinder- und Jugendbuchpreises 2008 (Recommended List of Catholic Children and Youth Book Prizes)
Die besten 7 Bücher für junge Leser.

Alle seine Entlein by Christian Duda and Julia Friese

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