The Boy and the Lion
. Ginn and Company . Aylesbury Bucks, England
BG 6 .
PZ8.2.B57 Boy 1983 (Carlson Fable Collection, BIC bldg)
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This is a well-worn but sympathetic and engaging sixteen-page pamphlet with stiff covers. I love Biro's illustrations. The boy in this booklet is indeed a boy, vaguely African with a cap and a tattered long shirt that serves as his only clothing. The king for whom he works is cruel, and so the boy runs away. Biro gives great expressions to the pained lion as he approaches the boy with his paw bleeding. This lion speaks, and so he can simply tell the boy his problem. The cruel king personally catches the lion and holds him in a net. He also catches the boy and wants to punish him by throwing him to the lion. Whereas the ruler usually sees the two encounter in an amphitheater of some sort, here he sees them encounter in the lion's jail den, into which he throws the boy. When the two smile at each other and the boy puts his arm around the lion, the amazed king lets both go free. Is this act in character? Now I have found nine of the twelve booklets in this series.