Lost Childress is a children’s book written by Jose V. Torres and illustrated by Julia Feldman appropriate for kids between 3-5 years old. It’s a story about a duck in search of a lake by the forest. When the duck asks a dove for directions, he is told to simply fly there. Childress insists he can’t fly, but the dove insists he can. Though the duck attempts to fly, he fails multiple times. The neighborhood cat, Beals, observes this and tries to trick Childress by telling him he is too heavy to fly and should pluck out his feathers. The duck complies, but sneaky Beals convinces the duck to get into a pot of warm water to keep from being cold. The dove returns and tells Childress the truth and walks with him to the lake when the cat goes off to fetch some veggies.
This story shares a powerful lesson for developing minds to not be so trusting of strangers. Clearly the duck had the capability to fly; he just didn’t know how. It can be implied Childress was simply too young to know any better, and the cat tried to exploit him for his own gain. The white dove is equally a powerful symbol in this story in that it represents the wise, peaceful and good nature of man. Even after the trickery and loss, the duck was still able to reach his destination, albeit in the safe company of the white dove. It is an entertaining and moving story sure to be a favorite for many children learning to read and learning about the sometimes unsafe world we live in.
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