Cover image for In like a lion, out like a lamb
In like a lion, out like a lamb
In like a lion, out like a lamb
Personal Author:
Publisher Info:
New York : Holiday House, c2011.
Physical Description:
1 volumes (unp.) : illustrations ; 26 cm.
Describes in verse the lion that is March weather, which finally gives way to the lamb of spring.
Added Author:


Call Number
Material Type
E BAUER New or Popular Picture Book

On Order



A fresh take on a familiar saying, perfect for the first rainy days of spring.

Rattling windows with the roar of a late-winter storm, March shows up like a lion-- wild and messy, muddy and wet. In rhythmic, exuberant text, Newbery Honor-author Marion Dane Bauer conveys the changeable nature of spring weather, as the lion makes way for the lamb--with a huge sneeze!--as the trees and flowers spring into bloom.

Full of humor and motion, Caldecott-winning illustrator Emily Arnold McCully's soft watercolors bring the blustering lion and gentle lamb to life. From hail and wet snow to vibrant green fields full of blossoms, the illustrations grow brighter, springing into new life--and hinting and the summer to come.

The lively text and paintings illustrate the ways in which we personify spring weather, making this book a perfect introduction to figurative language--and lots of fun to read as well.

Author Notes

Marion Dane Bauer was born in Oglesby, Illinois. She attended community college first, in her home town, and then went to the University of Missouri when she was a junior to study journalism. She quickly realized that journalism was not for her and changed her focus to the humanities and a degree in English literature. She switched one last time to focus on teaching english, which she did when she graduated college.

After her children were born, Bauer decided to try her hand at writing. She started out with a children's picture book, but discovered that youg adult novels were more to her taste. After making a career out of writing, Bauer became the first Faculty Chair at Vermont College for the only Master of Fine Arts in Writing program devoted exclusively to writing for children and young adults.

Bauer is the author of more than forty books for young people. She has won many awards, including a Jane Addams Peace Association Award for her novel Rain of Fire and an American Library Association Newbery Honor Award for On My Honor and the Kerlan Award from the University of Minnesota for the body of her work. Her picture book My Mother is Mine was a New York Times bestseller.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

School Library Journal Review

PreS-Gr 2-A March lion roars through a little boy's house, tracking in mud, sleet, and hail. No amount of coaxing convinces him to leave until on "one soft morning," buds and birds appear and a spring lamb rides in on the lion's gigantic sneeze. While the big cat retreats and sleeps until winter's return, the lamb presides over the new animal and plant life that signals the change of season. The large, lively illustrations, rendered in pen and ink and watercolor, depict a cantankerous lion intent on spreading blustery mayhem. In contrast, the lamb frolics in on wisps of pale green that give way to the awakening colors of spring. Animals poke their heads out of bushes and join in a comical parade featuring, among the revelers, the boy and his baby sibling, a monkey and nest of bird eggs riding on an elephant, and a roller-skating cat. Finally, the lamb, in turn, sneezes in a summery mix of bugs and flowers. The simple text plays with the popular metaphors, but the rhyme is occasionally forced. Julia Rawlinson's Fletcher and the Springtime Blossoms (2009) and Douglas Florian's poems about springtime in Handsprings (2006, both HarperCollins/Greenwillow) are better vehicles for celebrating the delights of this special season.-Marianne Saccardi, formerly at Norwalk Community College, CT (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publisher's Weekly Review

Newbery Honor-author Bauer (On My Honor) and Caldecott-winning artist McCully (Mirette on the High Wire) have fun with a familiar weather simile. A feisty lion is first on the scene: "March comes with a roar./ He rattles your windows/ and scratches at your door. He turns snow to mud,/ then tromps across your floor." The animal taunts a child whose home he muddies (" 'Were you expecting spring?' he snickers./ 'Reach for your slickers' ") before stubbornly settling in, a raincloud over his head. The lamb arrives, comically, in the spray of the lion's sneeze amid a shower of flower petals, taking over as the lion curls up in the sun. As the tale closes, the lamb assembles baby animals (and a human infant in a pram) in a verdant meadow, yet splashes of visual humor (the book ends with the lamb sneezing out a summer's worth of insects) save it from becoming too syrupy. The palette of McCully's wispy pen-and-ink and watercolor art brightens as spring blooms, while the cadence and rhyme of Bauer's verse are as variable as March itself. Ages 4-8. (Mar.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Booklist Review

The title's familiar proverb, muse for many a postwinter bulletin board, inspires this picture-book interpretation. March comes with a roar. / He rattles your windows / and scratches at your door reads the text as the ink-and-watercolor illustrations show a young boy, who looks out the window and finds an ominous feline face peering in through the snow. Each subsequent scene illustrates the literal meaning a child might imagine when hearing the meteorological metaphors: a lion tracks mud, sleet, and hail into the house and just will not leave. Then, one morning, some fresh air tickles the obstinate beast's nose, and a cute lamb comes flying out with his sneeze, spreading springtime and newness. The poetic license in this final scene, as well as in some of the rhymes, feels stretched, but both the words and pictures offer a warm depiction of the change of seasons along with a shout-out to young springtime allergy sufferers.--Medlar, Andrew Copyright 2010 Booklist