Ellen's Lion: Twelve Stories by Crockett Johnson
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
Originally published in 1959 and out of print for two decades, this collection of very short stories chronicles Ellen’s relationship– complete with two-way conversations–with her floppy stuffed lion. Ellen’s temperament is a bit like Christopher Robin’s (though her appearance is a clone of Harold, from Harold and the Purple Crayon fame), but her lion is a no-nonsense, tougher-minded Pooh, with the voice of reason and reality to counter Ellen’s high-flying imagination. The stories range from fear of the dark and being sad to playing doctor, being a fairy princess, and dealing with a new toy that almost replaces lion.
Parents will find the subtly droll stories as entertaining as children, and a child who reads chapter books will find especially rewarding.
if I could look both ways at the same time.” “Yes,” said the lion. “But who has two pairs of eyes?” “Two people have,” Ellen said, staring up at where the ceiling was when it wasn’t so dark. “I wouldn’t be afraid to go down the hall for a drink of water if I was two people.” Suddenly she reached out for the lion, dragged him to her, and looked him in the eyes. “Mine are buttons,” he said. “They’re sewn on. I can’t see very well in the dark.” “Nobody can,” Ellen whispered as she got out of
said the lion as the cigar wedged into his mouth. “I’m the doctor,” the doctor said. “And I say you have to stop smoking. You want to get well, don’t you?” She snatched the cigar from the lion’s mouth and frowned at it. She put it in her own mouth and she ate it while she took the lion’s pulse and tapped his knees with a small rubber hammer to check his reflexes. “You’re going to be all right,” she said. “But you’ll have to take things easy for a while.” She took off the lion’s bandages,
each other,” Ellen explained to the lion. “Admiral Smith is a statue of General Jones and General Jones is a statue of Admiral Smith.” At the mention of their names both statues bowed again, so low that Ellen had to grab them to stop them from falling forward. As she straightened them up their legs bent and they broke into a slithering sort of jig. Despite Ellen’s grasp on each of them they continued to dance. They hopped and leapt and bounced all over the place. “That’s enough,” said Ellen,
“You’re the king’s son the witch put the charm on,” the knight explained. “And I’m the invincible knight. I’m on your side.” “Good,” said the lion. The arrow sailed out of the window, like a spear. And then, with no warning or explanation of any kind, the invincible knight clutched at her throat and fell back dying. “The wicked witch is dead,” she gasped. “The arrow I threw at her went right through her mean old heart and the infidels all ran away. The castle is saved.” Stuffing the last of
the handsome prince from her embrace he changed right back into a stuffed beast and fell to the playroom floor, bouncing under a red fire truck. “I have to go down to the back yard and get that arrow I threw out of the window,” said Ellen. MOUNTAIN CLIMB “Are you by any chance a mountain lion?” Ellen asked. “No,” said the lion. “How do you know?” said Ellen. “Have you ever tried climbing a mountain?” “No,” said the lion. “Wouldn’t you like to be the first lion to climb the highest mountain