Title: Blacky the CrowBlacky the Crow
Author: Thornton W. Burgess
Illustrator: Harrison Cady
Pages: 81
Star Rating: ★★★★★

Another story from the Green Forest series.

The Story.

Blacky the Crow is not thoroughly black-hearted, despite his name. No, he’s actually quite a good-hearted fellow – when he hears that danger is coming to the forest he rushes ahead and warns his fellow inhabitants. But there is one point on which Blacky the Crow is utterly unreasonable, and that is his love for freshly laid eggs.

Will Blacky’s desire to suck an egg cloud his normally good-natured temperament? Or will he continue in his position as watchman of the forest?

Discussion.

I love the Green Forest series. I love it for a few reasons – the humorous situations the characters often find themselves in, the sweetness of the prose, and the cute illustrations. But mostly I love the moral nature of the stories.

Blacky and his friends of the Green Forest do not always behave. On the contrary, they often misbehave. But every time they step out of line, justice has its day and mischief makers are either punished or thwarted. The characters learn that, however tempting evil may seem, it has its negative consequences.

Some of the moral instruction is found in the prose of the story, but a good deal of it is found in the introductory poems that are placed at the beginning of each chapter.

“No greater happiness is won.
Than through a deed for others done.” [pg. 54]

Yup.

“A thing is wrong or it is right, and that is all there is to it. But most people have hard work to see this when they want very much to do a thing that the still small voice way down inside tells them isn’t right. They try to compromise. To compromise is to do neither one thing nor the other but a little of both. But you can’t do that with right and wrong. It is a queer thing, but a half right never is as good as a whole right, while a half wrong often, very often, is as bad as a whole wrong.” [pg. 26]

Wasn’t that just great? Here’s one last quote.

“No one can live just for self alone. A lot of people think they can, but they are very much mistaken. They are making one of the greatest mistakes in the world. Every teeny, weeny act, no matter what it is, affects somebody else.” [pg. 16]

#bravo

The only trouble is that often times it is Mother Nature rather than God who is ascribed with planning out the system of just retribution. Now, while this is troubling, I believe it can easily be worked around.

Conclusion. A great story from a great series.

Review © 2014 Laura Verret

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