"It's the Right Thing to Do." is a tale coming from the Brazilian Caboclos Tribe living in the rainforest. The story teaches a lesson entailing the life of an ocelot named Lana, and a jaguar named Leo.
Lana, a beautiful ocelot, takes care of animals in the forest. She possesses wonderful characteristics of being kind and unselfish, while sharing her love for all. Throughout the story, Lana makes time to care for others when they are in need.
Contrary to Lana, Leo is quite selfish and sometimes, not kind at all. He chooses to live by himself, refuses to help others, and that is the way he likes it.
Through Lana's unselfish deeds, Leo learns a valuable lesson.
The human elements, indigenous storytellers and the loggers working in the forest, are only touched upon, with little commentary on the ecological effect of logging; the story focuses on the differences between selfish Leo and cooperative Lana. The friendliness towards all creatures from a carnivorous ocelot matches the softened reality of most traditional fables (though teaching her kittens to hunt is mentioned). Although the text pages, which superimpose small text over a pale illustration, can seem a little busy, the length seems ideal for reading aloud.
The plot is clear and easy to understand, and the illustrations are vibrant and playful, with a pen-and-watercolor effect, lightly anthropomorphizing the creatures while still maintaining a sense of realism. Young readers will enjoy this gentle call for selflessness.
Takeaway: This animal friendship tale and its simple lesson will be enjoyed by late preschool through early grade audiences.
Great for fans of: Aesop's fables, Laurie Keller's Do Unto Otters.
Design and typography: A-
Marketing copy: A