Esteemed author Eve Bunting brings all her insight, empathy, and storytelling skill to this powerful allegorical tale, set in the streets of an unnamed city and illustrated with striking woodcuts. Danny, new to town, is proud when a glittery-eyed tiger invites him for a ride. He climbs up onto the tiger’s massive back, and together they cruise the neighborhood. Everyone gives them respect—shopkeepers and passersby, even other kids. Danny feels powerful and much older than ten. Soon, though, he realizes it isn’t respect people feel for him and the tiger—it’s fear. And when he decides to get down off the tiger’s back, he discovers it’s a lot harder than climbing on.
Whether the tiger is interpreted to represent gangs, drugs, or something else altogether, this poetically told, dramatically illustrated book is sure to provoke discussions about temp-tation, peer pressure, and conformity.