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Peter and the Wolf
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Peter and the Wolf

3.51  ·  Rating details ·  298 Ratings  ·  63 Reviews
Sergei Prokofiev composed his Peter and the Wolf in 1936 with the hope of introducing children to the instruments of the orchestra. It happens that he also devised a wonderfully dramatic story. The characters - boy, bird, duck, cat, grandfather, wolf, hunters - and their doings have been beloved by young and old for decades.

Writer, artist, musician, and Caldecott Medalis
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published November 4th 2008 by Atheneum/Richard Jackson Books (first published 2008)
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Edel Mc
Nov 26, 2012 rated it it was ok
This is a story of a boy who goes out into the woods for a walk even though his grandfather told him not to. He meets many animals on his travels, a cat, bird, duck and a wolf. The book is very well illustrated which is good as visual aids for children to help them imagine the story. There is a good sequence of events which allows children to understand and follow story and useful to recap on the story.
The story is engaging and captivating throughout as Peter is constantly meeting new characters
Oct 13, 2017 rated it liked it
Raschka's rendition of Peter and the Wolf is cute. There is humor, and an obviousness to the story. "Here is the duck..." "This is what they do..."
Oct 13, 2015 rated it liked it
Title: Peter and the Wolf
Author: Chris Raschka
Genre: European Folktale; Poetry
Theme(s): Animals; Kindness; Bravery
Opening line/sentence: Early one morning Peter opened the gate and went out on a big green meadow.
Brief Book summary: When the wolf eats up the duck, Peter decides he needs to get involved and stand up to the wolf. He lassos the wolf and saves the day. The wolf then gets sent to live in a zoo.
Professional Review 1:
"The classic story is set in the great northern woods. Peter lives wi
Sarah Zablotney
Title: Peter and the Wolf
Author: Chris Raschka
Genre: European Folktale
Theme(s): Death, Peace and War, Power
Opening line/sentence:
“Here is Peter. Here is what he says: Look at me
Run around and climb around and skip around
In this lovely, large, lovely field of green."
Brief Book Summary:
This story has many different characters including; Peter, the bird, the duck, a cat, the grandfather, the wolf, the hunters, and the veterinarian. Peter and all the other characters have a role and once the w
Title: Peter and the Wolf
Author: Sergei Prokofiev
Genre: European Folktale
Opening line/sentence:
One morning, a young boy named Peter opened his gate
and walked out into the big green meadow that was beyond it.

Brief Book Summary:
Prokofiev wrote a story introducing children to music as a child's introduction to the orchestra with each character being represented by an instrument or group of instruments.

Professional Recommendation/Review #1:
Publishers Weekly
Prokofiev's orchestral tale, also r
Oct 17, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Peter and the Wolf retold by Chirs Raschka
Atheneum Books for Young Readers, New York, NY, 2008.
Interest Level: Grades 2-6 because the read along could interest developing readers but the cultural connection to the music could appeal to older readers.

This book is an interpretation of Sergei Prokofiev's symphony and story of Peter and the Wolf. The story follows Peter, his grandfather, and various animals as they try to evade the wolf's grasp. The framed illustrations are miniature stage sets that
Aug 07, 2013 rated it liked it
Set in wintry Russia a century ago this charming story, specifically designed to entertain children and introduce them to various instruments of the orchestra, was created by an established composer; the best narration occurs in conjunction with the orchestra. The use of "leitmotiv"—assigning one particular instrument to play one melodic strain—helps listeners recognize which character is on center stage.

Young Peter, visiting his grandfather’s cottage by the big woods, is warned repeatedly no
Dec 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Raschka has taken Prokofiev's orchestral masterpiece and reworked it into a picture book that both pays homage to the music and also takes it to a different place. The book introduces each character in turn, gives them a voice and a sound and has them appear on the stage. First comes Peter, who is a spinning, twirling, whirling force. Then comes the bird, who is a delight to read aloud with his stutter and rhythm. My favorite then enters, the duck, who virtually yodels, calling his presence to e ...more
Nov 17, 2013 rated it liked it
My newly-five-year-old son picked this book out from our local library last week.

I wanted to really like this book; I've been known to attend concerts performing Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf before I had children (although the last time I was pregnant with my five-year-old son). I wanted to really like this book, but I just didn't.

I like the idea of the book -- telling the story of Peter and the Wolf in a non-Disney way and putting some of the fear and fierceness back into the original story
Rebecca Ann
I LOVED the illustrations in this book. They have a messy, half finished look, with some pages having lots of white space and some a bit more busy and painterly. I especially loved that the whole story was framed on a stage. Raschka retells the story of Peter and the wolf and changed quite a bit. There is a boy, a bird, a duck, a cat and a wolf. The duck and bird argue, the a cat tries to eat the bird and a wolf comes and eats the duck. Peter catches the wolf by the tail and some hunters come an ...more
Camille Ryckman
May 22, 2014 rated it really liked it
Peter and the Wolf
Brief summary Classic retelling of the symphonic children’s classic
Annotation - This is a book that must be pre-read and practiced before reading aloud. The unusual sounds the animals make to imitate the instruments in the symphony take some time to work through so it sounds natural.
Age appropriateness 3-5 years
Connection to six early literacy skills
Phonological awareness - This book uses a lot of different sounds to imitate animals that may not be what children have heard bef
Mar 09, 2012 rated it it was ok
I did not like this book at all. It made absolutely not sense at all. It was in the format of kids putting on a play and each character saying certain lines. Most of the words were just made up words that I had no idea how to pronounce and it made it impossible to follow the story line. I barely even know what happened. I just know a wolf ate the bird and there were hunters trying to kill the wolf and then Peter came and saved them all, or something like that. It was supposed to be a fairy tale ...more
I loved this! To be able to take a piece of music and turn it into a storybook, complete with musical tones of each character, is simply genius! I could hear the different parts of the music as I read each part, because Chris Raschka retold this story in such a way that each voice had a unique sound. He even wrote out a lot of sounds in his words.

This book is just awesome! It takes a story typically told on stage with music and puts the stage performance straight onto the pages.

And the artwork
Aug 18, 2009 rated it it was ok
Ok, so this is my honest opinion, if you want to read this book go to the library and check it out first. It's cute, has wonderful drawings but in my case it did not keep my child's attention. He just looked at me like I was crazy trying to pronounce the words in the book. Maybe if you quickly read this to yourself before reading it to your child you will have an easier time...
I would not recommend anyone to buy this book, but it does have some awesome illustrations and it's a cute concept.
Nov 12, 2008 rated it liked it
I love the way this book looks. It's so bold and fresh! And before opening it I thought about all the possibilities of pairing it with the musical score. And I reminisced about watching the Disney version in music class every year.

But then I opened the book, and I oh, so loved the collages... but when I tried to read the dialogue, I realized that it was kind of like talking to an acid casualty. It doesn't make any sense.
Dec 06, 2013 rated it it was ok
This is a favorite of mine, childhood or adulthood, the music and tale are beautiful.
This rendition is best entitled 'vaguely related to but nothing like what you know Peter and the Wolf'.
I can imagine this would be very visually and aurally entertaining for children at story time but I don't believe it is good enough to represent the original nor act as any form of introduction to this piece.
Feb 22, 2011 rated it liked it
This book is funny and is sure to gain students' interest as they listen to the story of Peter and the wolf. The book is a great tool to incorporate music into a lesson and introduce the class to string, woodwind, brass and percussion instruments that make up the orchestra. In the book the orchestra this book incorporates music otehr animals. Students can make predictions as to what will happen
Jun 25, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books, wolves
A picture book version of Sergei Prokofiev's composition that sought to introduce children to the instruments of the orchestra.

For the artwork, the artist constructed miniature stages made of heavy paper, painted in watercolor, and cut and glued together to make a 3-dimensional illustration. I liked the leap the artwork took here, it worked well for the story and added drama and flair.
Bvlmc Buchanan Verplanck Elementary School
The author creates a cacophony of sound in this modernistic rendition of the classic folk tale "Peter and the Wolf". With the abstract artistic themes throughout the illustrations, only those well grounded in the original tale will follow this story although young children may find humor in the nonsense words designed to create animal sounds and activity.
Katie Nerheim
Apr 23, 2013 rated it liked it
I liked this story a lot because of the illustrations. The story was definitely for younger kids though. The plot was made a little easier to read because of the dialog. I am planning on teaching older kids so I would not read this in my classroom but it was pretty entertaining. I liked the pictures and it would be good to read out loud. The classic story is always nice to hear.
While I already knew I loved Raschka's work, I didn't expect to like this one as much as I did. The illustrations are tremendous and the text is great to read aloud. My son also loved it!

As a side note, I appreciate Raschka's artwork, but because it is so unique, I can understand why some people really dislike it. I think that can account for some of the 1 stars his books receive.
The Library Lady
Nov 24, 2008 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: people who think that award winning authors/illustrators can do no wrong.
Recommended to The Library Lady by: A misguided book reviewer--probably from Kirkus
I'm sorry. I don't care how many damn awards Raschka gets, I just DON'T LIKE HIS BOOKS!

I don't see what makes his version of "Peter and the Wolf" worth the $18.00 of taxpayer money I plunked down for it. There are far better versions on the shelf already--and they generally even come with a CD of the music.

Jennifer Oaks
Dec 16, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: playtale
This is another play tale that I have read I have to say that I like this one better. The book is set up to where it is repetitive. On the first page, it shows the character and the lines it is saying. Then on the second page, it shows which animal is entering next. This is a fun book to do with reader's theatre or even as a class project.
Stephanie Sesic
Mar 17, 2009 rated it liked it
My preschooler enjoyed this retelling. Each character is introduced on their own page, with the facing page framed like a stage and illustrating the action when that character enters the play. The nonsense words and repetition are great for preschoolers. Mine enjoyed it at least. But then, she's obsessed with wolves!
Mar 14, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: picture-books
The sounds created through the words in the book were pretty neat but I was not a fan of this style (I'm the first to admit I am not the most cultured or artistic person so maybe I don't appreciate true "art").
Leslie Fisher
Sep 22, 2015 rated it did not like it
Shelves: childrens-books
Very rarely do I totally dislike a book, but neither I, nor my kids, liked this one. It was a struggle to even finish it. Maybe a narrated copy would have been better because I just couldn't get into the rhythm of this book.
Aug 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s, poetry, music
This book can be enjoyed alone or while listening to a record of Peter and the Wolf by Sergei Prokofiev. Christopher Raschka is the illustrator and writer of the words which have the rhythm of the music. The themes for each animal are clear.
Jun 02, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: school
This book has tons of voice which will be excellent when having my kids do their own retelling of the folk tale. However it is not the best telling of this story. It is a good addition to add to multiple retellings. I did not care for the illustrations.
Liza Gilbert
Unbelievably confusing and awful. Raschka tries to layer the voices and actions of different characters in this classic fairy tale, but instead creates a jumbled up story that does not hold interest. The appearance of hunters with shotguns (in a picture book) is over-the-top.
Tim Eichorst
Feb 01, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book is a great one to pick up, especially if you're a fan of classical (romantic?) music. The book is a verbal representation of Sergei Prokofiev's musical composition of the same name. It would be fun to listen to the recording with a child and using the book to help visualize!
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"I always try to treat the book itself as the artwork," Chris Raschka says. "I don't want you to stop while you're reading one of my books and say, 'Oh! What a gorgeous illustration!' I want you to stop at the end of the book and say, 'This is a good book.' "

Chris Raschka is one of those people who knew from an early age what he wanted to be when he grew up. "It was never a question in my mind,"
More about Chris Raschka...