Library Lion by Michelle Knudsen and Kevin Hawkes

Libraries and lions seem like an odd pairing, but in this unique tale (tail?), it somehow works.

As we know, libraries have strict rules, and in this story the two basic rules are: 1. no running; and 2. be quiet. But there are no rules about lions being in the library, are there? And so, this is the story of a special lion who walks into the library one day and decides that he likes it — particularly the story-telling sessions.

The lion soon becomes a familiar visitor as he learns to obey the rules of the library and endears himself to almost everyone — particularly the head librarian, Miss Merriweather, whom he helps with dusting the books and licking the envelopes. He even lets little children stand on his back to get the books that are out of their reach!


Alas one day, an accident results in the lion inevitably breaking the cardinal rules, and as a result, he stops going to the library (spoiler: temporarily at least).

Library Lion is a somewhat old-fashioned yet timeless story about the attraction that a library holds and how it welcomes anyone — even a lion! — to enjoy its books and facilities, as long as they obey the rules, of course. Although, as the story illustrates, sometimes, rules can be broken for a very good reason.

We really enjoyed this heartwarming story, as well as the warm and fuzzy illustrations of the lion in the library (the stone lions outside the library, à la the New York Public library, are a nice touch and was pointed out by my son who thought that was where the lion was when he disappeared!). A great book for library lovers that will excite children’s imaginations and bring out the magic of libraries.

Check out this video reading of the book:

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