BooksForKidsBlog

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Follow the Leader! My BiBi Always Remembers! by Tony Buzzeo

Little Tembo the elephant is thirsty!

RUMMMMMMMBBBBLLLLE!

Tembo hears her Bibi (grandmother) calling the aunties, the sisters, and her own Mama across the dry plain.

WHEN BIBI CALLS, EVERYONE COMES!

It's the dry season, and everyone is thirsty, but Bibi remembers where the water can be found, just below the ground. Mama and the others hustle toward where Bibi is digging with her long tusks where the water hole used to be.

BUT TEMBO HAS ANOTHER IDEA.

Little Tembo sees the cool shade of the jackleberry tree and decides to stop to snack on its dark, green leaves. But Mama comes back, scoops her up with her tusks, and urges her to come along, and when they find the others, Bibi squirts some cool water in Tembo's mouth.

Their matriarch treks on, with Tembo bringing up the rear. Then she notices a stork, and she can't resist giving it a chase! Storks are so funny when they run!

But when Tembo looks up, the others are out of sight! Her squeals bring Auntie back to curl her trunk around Tembo and lead her in the way the others have gone. But soon she is tired.

TEMBO HAS ANOTHER IDEA.

She lies down in the shade and when she wakes up, there are hyenas laughing and lions huffing in the tall grass. She squeals, but this time there is no Mama or Auntie in sight. Afraid, Tembo calls again, very loudly.

BIBI! WHICH WAY SHOULD I GO!

BRRRRAWW! And Bibi appears, kicking up the dust with her quick step, step, step.

COME ALONG, LITTLE TEMBO. BIBI REMEMBERS THE WAY!

Tony Buzzeo's latest My Bibi Always Remembers (Hyperion Books, 2014) describes how elephant matriarchs lead their families to the places where their long memories recall where food and water can be found. Along with the familiar story of the lost little one, Buzzeo's narrative and artist Mike Wohnoutka's charming but realistic illustrations show how elephants pass along their wisdom in the ways of nature. As Tembo whispers to herself as she snuggles next to her grandmother that night,

SOMEDAY I'LL BE THE BIBI, AND THEN I'LL ALWAYS REMEMBER.

Tony Buzzeo is also the author of her cool hit with artist David Small, One Cool Friend (see review here).

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