Cover image for Pauline
Hallensleben, Georg.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Farrar, Straus & Giroux, [1999]

Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 31 cm
Pauline the weasel has an imaginative plan to rescue her elephant friend who has been trapped by hunters.
General Note:
1st ed.

"Frances Foster books."
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
FICTION Juvenile Fiction Oversize
FICTION Juvenile Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Pauline's parents don't allow her to leave their nest until they decide she is big enough, but even then she feels very small. Everything around her is bigger than she is -- especially her best friend, Rabusius, who is an elephant. One terrible day hunters come into the jungle and capture Rabusius and put him in a truck. Pauline is sacred, but knows that it's up to her to free him. She disguises herself as a monster and in a daring rescue frightens the hunters away and saves her much larger friend. With bright-hued artwork and a classically straightforward text, Georg Hallensleben demonstrates the power of imagination.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Ages 3^-6. In the same style as his paintings for Kate Banks' Baboon (1997), Hallensleben tells another loving story about a small animal in the jungle. This time there's an adventure. Pauline is a small weasel who becomes best friends with Rabusus, a baby elephant. When Rabusus is trapped in a net by humans and hauled away in a truck, Pauline dresses up as a dangerous monster--in feathers, paint, and a white mask--to scare off the hunters and rescue her friend. For preschoolers, there's great appeal in the story of the small, powerful trickster who is both innocent and shrewd. The double-spread paintings with lush green backgrounds play with size and perspective, presenting them from Pauline's point of view. In one picture, when the weasel and the elephant meet, Pauline finds herself among his four towering legs. In the final triumphant spread after the rescue, all the animals in the jungle dress up as monsters and party the night away in Halloween style. --Hazel Rochman

Publisher's Weekly Review

Illustrator Hallensleben (And If the Moon Could Talk) makes his first solo outing in this gorgeous but problematic jungle book. The title character is a "fuzzy-eared weasel" living in a tree in Africa, but with her cocoa-brown back, cream-colored stomach and black nose, Pauline resembles a kangaroo. One day, she meets a young elephant named Rabusius, and they remain playmates until hunters come along. When the men capture Rabusius and put him on a truck, Pauline saves him by dressing up as a monster in "feathers, paints, and a white mask" and frightening the men. Her minor size is no handicap so long as she wears her shocking chalk-white and blood-red disguise, which looks like tribal ritual garb and violently clashes with the ripe avocado greens and earthy browns of her habitat. Hallensleben provides a triumph of the meek over the powerful, but to do so he must break the conventions that govern people and anthropomorphic animal characters. The four-legged heroine uses strictly two-legged tactics to rescue her friend, and her behavior is inconsistent with the lush figurative paintings of African wilderness. The result is a discomfiting blend of zoology and fantasy, with talking animals vanquishing very real-looking poachers and then throwing "an enormous party" to celebrate. Ages 3-6. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 3 In a jungle story reminiscent of Babar (Random) or Curious George (Houghton), an ingenious young weasel named Pauline saves her elephant friend Rabusius from hunters by dressing up as a monster. This is the first book that Hallensleben, who did the artwork for Kate Banks's And If the Moon Could Talk (Farrar, 1998), has written as well as illustrated. His richly colored paintings in thick brush strokes are almost impressionistic; and although the animal figures are simply detailed, almost stiff, he communicates both motion and emotion through the closely linked pacing of the narrative and perspective of the pictures. His text is quiet and restrained, though there's plenty of action in the story. Care and precision are evident in this book whose simple story will be widely appealing at storytime or at home. Nina Lindsay, Oakland Public Library, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.