Saturday, July 16, 2016

Review: Giant the Lion by Artemisa Gutierrez Laurence with Giveaway

The Lion Who Could Swim
by Artemisa Gutierrez Laurence
Illustrated by Izzy Bean
Picture Book
Giant Lion Publishing
ages 3+
44 pages

A touching tale of a lion cub named Giant who wants nothing more than to swim. With light-hearted dialogue and colorful illustrations, Giant the Lion is gentle inspiration for every child with dreams of greatness. Giant is going to learn to swim, and he is a little nervous. Good thing he as has good friends to cheer him on including Flighty Mighty the bird, Hara the Hippo, Mother Duck, Sally the Giraffe, Betty the Butterfly and Al the Alligator. Giant wades in with both paws and soon is kicking and paddling and swimming circles with the rest of the his friends. With the encouragement of his friends and a lot of practice, Giant becomes the fastest swimmer, good enough to compete in an upcoming swim competition on the lake. Whether water-shy or raring to go, young readers will find much to relate to as Giant experiences a childhood first, and what it means to never give up.


Stepping into the water for the first time can be a difficult moment for many kids, but maybe this book will help give them a little shove of inspiration.

Giant the Lion is a sweet lion cub who is a little amazed that all of his jungle friends splash and swim around in the lake as if it's no problem at all. They invite him to join them, but he's never swam before and isn't so sure it's a task he wants to tackle.

The cast of characters in this book is a sheer jungle delight. Not only is Giant the Lion sweet enough to cuddle, but the others--Sally the Giraffe, Hara the Hippo, Myrtle the Turtle--are sure to draw smiles. They all work together to help Giant out, and that's the most important message of this book. Each has their own talent when it comes to swimming, and when each brings it in patiently, that's when things click into place.

The illustrations are adorable, bright and invite the reader to gaze at them again and again. They fit the text nicely. There's not a small amount of text (more fitting for kids 3+) and at times, the story seemed to include a little much. But all in all, it's a fun read with a great message. There's also tips tossed in here and there, which can be used to help kids ease their way into swimming. On the last page, there's a list of swimming guidelines to help insure a safe experience.

Summed up, this is a sweet book with lovely illustrations which will draw unwilling water bunnies in and hopefully give them a little encouragement. And even for those who love water, there's a great story and they'll recognize several things and feel for Giant's experience.

And here she is. . .

Artemisa Gutierrez Laurence is an educator who holds a Master of Arts in Education and holds Elementary teaching credentials. Laurence has taught children how to swim as a Water Safety Instructor for over 25 years. “After teaching children how to swim for several years, I discovered that many children are fearful to learn. However, once they learned how to breathe, kick, and swim, children were surprised at how well they did. They soon realized their strength, skill and love of swimming. Like anything else you want to achieve in life, you just have to try and you may just discover your gift and talent to share with the world.”


To win 1 (one) paperback copy of Giant the Lion by Artemisa Gutierrez Laurence, leave a comment below with email address. One winner will be randomly drawn from all comments and contacted per email. Open to US residents/addresses only. Contest closes at Midnight EST on July 31st. Winner will be announced on here on August 1st.


Sandra Watts said...

Thanks for hosting. I love reading books to my grand kids.

Tonja Drecker said...

And the winner is. . .Sandra!!!