The Gentle Lion and Little Owlet : A Tale of an Unlikely Friendship by Alice Shirley

The Gentle Lion and Little Owlet : A Tale of an Unlikely Friendship

Written by Alice Shirley

3+ readers   
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The Lovereading4Kids comment

The touching story of a very unusual friendship lies at the heart of this beautiful book. When a little owl falls from the sky and lands on a lion’s paws it should be terrified. Instead, this little owlet feels sure he’s found a friend! How the huge lion and the tiny owlet share their feelings and dream of exploring the big wide world together is heart-warming and the richly atmospheric illustrations capture the mood perfectly.


The Gentle Lion and Little Owlet : A Tale of an Unlikely Friendship by Alice Shirley

A plucky young owlet decides to try and find his own dinner one day and so flies from the safety of his nest into the unknown world surrounding him. Little does he know that his nest is in a tree in the middle of a zoo - and he quickly finds himself face-to-face with a lion. Yet, instead of being eaten, the owlet and lion become friends. As the zookeeper tries in vain to rescue the owl, the owl comes up with a plan to help the lion escape too.

A wonderful tale of an unlikely friendship, perfect for young children. Based on a true story that happened at Paignton Zoo (on the south coast of England) and with stunning illustrations throughout from new artist talent Alice Shirley, author and illustrator of the successful Illustrated Classics edition of Aesop's Fables also published by Pavilion. Approximately 1000 words.

About the Author

Alice Shirley is a graduate of the Byam Shaw School of Art (now part of the London Institute). She has worked with the sculptor Anthony Gormly and has recently finished a major illustration project called Squid In Ink for the Natural History Museum. Alice lives in London.

Click here to see a video of Alice painting the squid for the museum.

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Book Info


32 pages
Interest Age: From 2 To 5


Alice Shirley
More books by Alice Shirley


Pavilion Children's Books an imprint of Anova Books

Publication date

21st March 2012




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