Jack and Jill

by Daniel Kirk
Putnam, 2003
Jack and Jill

Book Description
Jack and Jill went up the hill; 
it took them quite a while.
Jack looked into the well and screamed,
“A giant crocodile!”

It’s not easy to fetch a pail of water when you’re faced with a hungry croc who isn’t in the mood to share. What are Jack and Jill to do? Their father’s disappeared and their mother doesn’t believe in talking crocodiles, but could a plumber help them? Or Bossie, their pet cow? Perhaps if they can come up with the right wish, Jack and Jill might get their water . . . and what they really need, too!

With vivid illustrations, Daniel Kirk expands the classic nursery rhyme and introduces us to two plucky siblings who won’t let anything keep them down.

Reviews of Jack and Jill

Review from Children’s Literature
The twist on the well-known nursery rhyme is a delight for the reader… The ending has a wonderful and unexpected twist! Parents will have fun reading the book over and over with their child.

Daniel Kirk speaks about Jack and Jill
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When I read Mother Goose rhymes, I always wondered why Jack and Jill had to go up the hill to get water. What made Jack fall down? Was he clumsy? Why did Jill come tumbling after? Did the kids get hurt badly, or were they going to be OK? None of these questions are answered in the original rhyme, so I decided to write a story to explain what might have happened. In fact, I ended up writing a couple of stories!

In the first story, Jack and Jill are the king’s children, and they have an adventure with a dirty dog. It was cute and funny, but somehow I thought there might be a better story idea just waiting for me to find it. I came up with another idea, in which Jack and Jill are a couple of poor children. When their mother tells them to get water for their pet goldfish, they find an enchanted crocodile living in the well! The story of Jack and Jill became a drama about the children’s struggle to outsmart the crocodile.

Things to think about and do after reading Jack and Jill
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1. Did you ever have a wish come true? Jill makes lots of wishes that have unexpected results. Did you ever have a wish like this?

2.  This story of Jack and Jill uses the Mother Goose rhyme as a starting point for telling an original story about what happens to two children when they go to get water from a well. Make up your own story about two kids named Jack and Jill, and tell why they might have to go and get water. Does your story have a happy ending?

3. Check and see if your library has any other books that are based on famous nursery rhymes. Which ones do you like best? Why?

4.  Indoor plumbing is a rather recent invention. Find out what people in the past did to take care of important household tasks, like cooking, cleaning, and entertaining themselves, before the invention of refrigerators, sinks, stoves, toilets, telephones and television!


                              Copyright 2015 | Daniel Kirk