Chanticleer, king of the barnyard, struts about all day. When a fox bursts into his domain, dupes him into crowing, and then grabs him in a viselike grip, Chanticleer must do some quick thinking to save himself and his barnyard kingdom.
This adaptation of the The Nun's Priest's Tale, from Geoffrey Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, is a delightful way to introduce children to some classic literature. They can get a glimpse of medieval times from the story and the illustrations, and Barbara Cooney brings out the industry and economy of the poor widow as she takes care of her children, livestock and house in a simple way. The pictures are precise and brilliant, but not overpowering. The description of Chanticleer elevates him from an ordinary rooster to a work of art. The story has the virtue of pointing out the folly of listening to flattery as well as the value of quick thinking on Chanticleer's part in a perilous situation.