Prather’s Pick: A funny tale for Valentine’s Day
Remember “the old lady who swallowed a fly”? This week’s picture book for children is a modern version of the well-known tale/verse. The funny book is a Valentine’s Day treat for readers.
“There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Rose” was written by Lucille Colandro and illustrated by Jared Lee.
The illustration of the old lady is a caricature. The old lady, who appears to be a real “character,” has an exaggerated jaw and mouth that are much larger than her arms and feet. She has pop-out eyes and wears spectacles just above her large nose. The old lady’s gray hair is done up in a bun, she wears a red floppy hat, baggy short pants, and a black shirt. She even wears tiny earrings. This is no quiet old lady; she jumps around all over the place.
It’s a good thing that the old lady has such a big mouth because she swallows a rose—stem, leaves, and all!
As the tale goes, “I don’t know why she swallowed a rose, but that’s how it goes.”
Next, the old lady swallows some lace, not a little bit of lace but a yard or so. A little black dog jumps up and down.
“She didn’t race to swallow that lace. She swallowed the lace to tie the rose. I don’t know why she swallowed the rose, but that’s how it goes.”
Next, the old lady swallows some glitter. It just floats down from the sky, she has her mouth wide open, and the glitter falls right in. The purpose of the glitter is to trim the lace. Now a white dog with black spots joins the scene. A bunch of birds, some frogs, and a few bugs also look on.
Then it’s candy of several shapes and colors that falls from the sky. The candy will garnish the glitter. The candy is followed by one big diamond-looking jewel. It’s going to brighten the candy. The old lady is so happy that she’s dancing around, almost clicking her heels together. She even knocks the black dog over.
This tale isn’t done. The old lady has still more things to swallow, including a Valentine card. She is one happy lady, and the book is her Valentine’s Day gift to readers.
This paperback book is published by Cartwheel Books, an imprint of Scholastic (2012). The book costs $6.99. I found it in a display of Valentine books at City Market.