The world of the inchworm, October 30, 2010
Leo Lionni has a sensitive heart to catch tiny creature’s world for the readers to see and in INCH BY INCH, the seemingly vulnerable inchworm has relied on his usefulness and intellects to beat the odds of his own survival game. Delightful and surprising as usual, the story starts when the inchworm is about to be gobbled up by the robin. As in Aesop’s Fable (THE LION & THE MOUSE), the smart prey persuades powerfully to the predator why it would be a mistake to eat him, “I am an inchworm. I am useful. I measure things.” Curiosity comes to the robin’s eyes, and after the inchworm measures his tail to be five inches long, the impressed robin spares his life. Put the inchworm’s talent into good use, the robin takes him to measure many other things – flamingo neck, toucan’s beak, the heron leg and the whole hummingbird. In the end, another crisis strikes that a nightingale also asks the inchworm to measure the immeasurable – his beautiful song. The nightingale may have a great voice but not much of a brain and the inchworm agrees to measure, inch by inch until ….the peril is behind him. An applaud for the inchworm and this remarkable book; though the hero is small (Where is the worm? The kids will look for the emerald inchworm on every page), his adventure is great.