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Luba and the Wren
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Luba and the Wren

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  202 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
When Luba helps a frightened wren, it promises to grant all of her wishes. "I am content, I have no wish," Luba says-at first. Then Luba's parents convince her to ask for a bigger house. After that, they want an estate, and later, they ask for a palace. With the granting of each wish Luba hopes her parents will be satisfied, but instead they only want more. Where will it e ...more
Paperback, 40 pages
Published February 18th 2002 by Puffin Books (first published May 24th 1999)
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Lisa Vegan
This is a Russian-style (as are some other Polacco books) take on the Grimm Brothers’ tale of The Fisherman And His Wife. I knew what was coming but if I hadn’t the story would have had a lot of suspense.

I ached for Luba, and the wren too, and even a bit for Luba’s foolish and greedy parents. The illustrations perfectly match the progression of the story.

The story itself seems a bit too moralistic to me; I always wish for a reasonable wish, or for the wishes to stop after the first wish, so some
Jun 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2011
Reading these earlier Polacco books reafirms my judgement that her 2011 book is grossly subpar. I love this retelling of The Fisherman's Wife.
Randie D. Camp, M.S.
Polacco's spin on Grimm's "The Fisherman and His Wife" is perhaps more intriguing because it highlights the innocence and strong values of a child. I also enjoyed Isadora's retelling The Fisherman and His Wife.

Luba rescues a Wren and it offers to grant her a wish. She declines, stating she already has everything she needs. When her parents learn of the Wren, the send Luba back repeatedly to grant them larger houses, more land, and eventually more power...they are relentless in their greed. Poor
Nov 20, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
I LOVED this book. I think I'm a sucker for any kind of retold fairy tale though. I really reminded me of the book by Anita Lobel, The Seamstress of Salzburg. A young girl is offered something unimaginable and she is content as she is. Her family is not, and, wishing to please them, she agrees to what is asked of her. I am a new convert to Patricia Polacco and I have to admit, I'm a little bias. We love her Thank you, Mr. Falker book!
Courtney Dyer
In this Russian version of Grimm’s The Fisherman and His Wife, Polacco puts a child-centered twist on a classic tale that illustrates the dangers of greed.

One day, Luba frees a Wren stuck in a net and the bird is so grateful for her kindness that it offers her a wish. Luba is content, however, when her poor farmer parents hear of her foolishness, they send her back to the Wren to ask for a bigger house and more land. Embarrassed to return to the Wren, Luba hopes that her parents will be satisfi
Linda Lipko
Jul 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
Walking through the forest, Luba finds a wren trapped in a net. Releasing the tiny bird, she is told that a wish will be granted. Wanting nothing, Luba returns home to parents who are dismayed at her lack of ignorance. Instructing her to go back into the forest and request a larger home with fertile ground, Luba hesitantly asks the wren for this favor.

Upon returning home, she finds a lovely home and surrounding area. Dissatisfied with their new acquisition, Luba is instructed to find the bird on
Dec 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
In this Russian twist on the tale of the fisherman and his wife, it is a wren that grants wishes to a little girl, Luba, and it is her parents who keep demanding escalating grandeur and power. Polacco's illustrations deftly trace the journey from happy poverty to unsatisfied wealth and back again. The dedication, "For children everywhere, who should be full of joy and free from care," and the epigraph, "For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also" (Matthew 6:21) bring to the forefr ...more
Apr 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I adored this story! It ws hard to watch Luba become distressed by the actions of her parents as they steadily became more and more greedy. However, it was all made worth it at the end when Luba's parents realized that Luba was the most precious treasure they had and remembered how important it is to love and care for their child. I would use this book to teach the conflict of man vs. self/society. In the story, Luba's parents are so rude and greedy that it hurts Luba a great deal. The conflict ...more
Cara Hanson
Nov 17, 2016 marked it as to-read
Awards: Parent's Choice Award (2001)

Appropriate Grade Level: Pre-K to Grade 3

Summary: Luba and the Wren is a Russian-based spin on the tale of The Fisherman and his Wife. As the already content Luba is offered a wish by a wren, she uses it to try to make her parents happy, a state that becomes more difficult as the days go on.

Review: The simple and contented nature of Luba is contrasted with the greediness of her parents in Luba and the Wren. The ending, in which Luba's parents come to realize t
Erin Sterling
Luba lives with her mother and father on a poor farm. When she saves a wren's life, he offers to give her any wish she wants, but she is content and happy. However, her parents make her ask for a bigger and better farm. That keeps them content for a while, but then they want an even bigger and better place. They make her go back to the wren over and over again, to the chagrin of Luba and annoyance of the wren. This is a story with an important lesson for those who are never being satisfied and w ...more
Beautiful, brilliantly colored illustraions for the Ukraine verison of The Fisherman and His Wife. This verison of the folktale showcases a young peasant girl and an enchanted wren. Luba desires no wishes from the wren, but her greedy parents do. After reading this I prefer it to tne various verisons of The Fisherman and Hids Wife. The child, Luba, is so content with her life--that is so very peaceful and refreshing.
Jul 06, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Story of a young Ukrainian girl who kindly saves a bird from death; which turns out to be a magical bird who wants to repay the kindness. Even though the girl refused the offer, saying she was already quiet content, her parents demanded she go back and ask the bird for a grander home and lands. The parents insist on this time and time again much to the girl's dismay.
Dec 19, 2013 rated it really liked it
4 1/2 - I don't think O really understood this one and I have to say I struggle with the ending and generally if I liked or disliked this story. I felt terrible for the little girl to have such greedy parents... may we all learn to be better people and less greedy.
Alex Wulfekuhle
May 01, 2016 rated it really liked it
Story of a young Ukrainian girl who kindly saves a bird from death; which turns out to be a magical bird who wants to repay the kindness. Even though the girl refused the offer, saying she was already quiet content, her parents demanded she go back and ask the bird for a grander home and lands.
Jan 26, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2017
The book is beautifully illustrated and the tale is well-told. The ending is a bit disappointing, though.
Dec 03, 2017 rated it liked it
A folktale that reminded me of the fish that is saved and grants wishes. Only in this story it is a wren. Add this to your folktale list.
May 19, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s-books
My three year old liked this, but I don't think she quite understands the message about greed.
Jan 16, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picturebooks
A Ukrainian version of "The Fisherman's Wife," only with a wren instead of a fish. Well-told with Polacco's signature watercolor paintings.
Jun 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Great folktale about not being a greedy jerk.
Sep 15, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: picture-book, youth
story: 3 stars
art: 1 star
Jul 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Delightful "fairy tale" story by one of my favorite children's authors.
Apr 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Polacco is ALWAYS fabulous...
Jan 14, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
Fantastic Ukrainian tale that parallels the lesson told in the classic story The Fisherman and His Wife by Jacob Grimm and Wilhelm Grimm.

The narrative is engaging and while our girls predicted the overall plot of the story, we were enchanted by the Ukranian theme and the lovely ending. The illustrations are terrific and complement the story wonderfully. We really enjoyed reading this story together.
Mandy E
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Jul 21, 2012
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Tiffany Meador mckenzie
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Jan 02, 2015
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Feb 06, 2018
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