Posts tagged Erin E. Stead

A Home for Bird by Philip C. Stead: A touching story of friendship, kindness and determination.

A Home for BirdDSC02042

Picture Book

Ages 3-7

By Philip C. Stead

32 pages

Roaring Brook Press

2012

Watch the trailer!

 

 

Philip C. Stead is the author of several books, some of which he illustrated himself and some that are illustrated by his wife, Erin E. Stead. Their book, A Sick Day for Amos McGee, won the 2011 Caldecott Medal, which is awarded annually to the artist of the most distinguished American picture book for children.

Philip C. Stead, the writer, possesses the rare ability to convey a world of thoughts with a minimal amount of text. His stories are perfectly paced and wholly satisfying. Philip C. Stead, the illustrator, creates images that invoke warm, pleasing feelings.

His art in A Home for Bird was created with crayons and gouache (an opaque watercolor paint) producing a whimsical, child-like feel. Each illustration contains its own radiant world of genial animals surrounded by curious items such as yo-yo’s, old cans, bottle caps and teacups.

The opening illustration of A Home for Bird features an old pick-up truck; “Careful Moving Company” is stenciled on its door. A small cuckoo bird has sprung from its clock and tumbled off the back of the overstuffed truck bed into the wide, unknown world. In the next spread, Vernon, a curious frog who loves to collect interesting items, discovers the newly homeless bird.

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Concerned, Vernon addresses the stoic bird but receives no response.

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The kind-hearted frog introduces Bird to Skunk and Porcupine but still, Bird says nothing. Vernon’s friends wonder if their silent new friend is lost, or missing his home. Ever helpful, Vernon prepares for a journey to help his new friend find his home.

The unlikely pair visits multiple dwellings: a discarded birdcage, a mailbox surrounded by flamingos, a nest full of eggs. Bird continues to be silent; Vernon is hopeful that Bird will speak up when they find the right home.

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After much travel and no luck, Vernon is sad for his new friend and the intrepid travelers are growing tired. Vernon decides to ask for help.

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The helpful stranger directs Vernon and Bird to a farmhouse. Inside the cozy house, Vernon introduces himself and his mute friend to some new friends. Spotting a lovely little house hanging on the wall, Vernon makes the climb up with Bird in his arms and deposits him safely behind a small door; Vernon goes to sleep behind another door—sporting a clock-face—directly beneath Bird. Vernon falls asleep to the rhythmic sounds of a clock.

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Vernon awoke in the bright house with its lovely sounds and wondered if Bird liked this home as much as he did. “And Bird said…”

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“And Vernon was happy.”

 

View the Book!

IndieBound / Powell’s / Amazon

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TurtleAndRobot’s 15 Favorite Picture Books about Spring

I am a BunnyBunnyCover

Board

Birth-3 years old

By Olé Risom

Illustrated by Richard Scarry

26 pages

Golden Books

Reprint edition: 2004

(Originally published in 1963)

 

Richard Scarry is a pillar in the hall of children’s books. His Busytown books should be in every home library. The illustrations in I am a Bunny are richer than his usual style, though they evoke the same joyous feelings that all his books share.

“I am a bunny. My name is Nicholas. I live in a hollow tree.”

Thus begins the perfectly simple story, which follows Nicholas the bunny through each of the four seasons; Scarry’s palette changes to match the seasons but is consistently luminous.

In the winter Nicholas curls up in his hollow tree and dreams of spring. And when spring arrives he likes to pick flowers and chase butterflies.

 

 

Spring is Herespring-is-here-board-book-by-taro-gomi

Board Book

Ages Birth-4

By Taro Gomi

34 pages

Chronicle

1999

 

Taro Gomi has created many wonderful books for children; I especially love his activity books, including Scribbles and Doodles. (Some readers may know him for his wildly popular book, Everyone Poops.) 

Using bright, simple illustrations and minimal text, this book focuses on all four seasons.

It opens in the spring, with a bold illustration of a fresh young calf; the bright white baby cow is set against a hot pink background.

Soon the calf’s black spots begin to appear, and the background becomes a warm, mellow orange. The seasons change, the calf grows, and soon it is spring again!

 

 

It’s Springits-spring

Board Book

Ages 2-5

By Samantha Berger & Pamela Chanko

Illustrated by Melissa Sweet

32 pages

Cartwheel

2001

 

Just looking at the cover of this book makes me want to skip through an open field.

All the animals are excited about the impending arrival of spring! Word spreads through the community from bird, to rabbit, to deer and to duck, and they all welcome the lovely new season.

 

 

The PuddleThePuddle

Picture Book

Ages 2-6

By David McPhail

32 pages

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

1998

Out of print

 

David McPhail has had a lengthy career in children’s books and he continues to create wonderful stories and pleasing illustrations.

On a rainy day, a young boy asks his mother if he can go outside and play in the puddles.

“Okay, but you stay out of the puddles.”

The boy dons his coat and boots, grabs his toy sailboat and heads outside in search of the largest puddle. Once he’s found it, he sets his boat to sail.

Soon a frog comes by and jumps on the boy’s boat. Then a turtle happens by for teatime. More and more animals join the fun creating a wild and unbelievable adventure.

Eventually the sun dries up the puddle and the animals and the boy return to their respective homes.

 

 

The Happy DayHappyDay-001

Picture Book

Ages 2-6

By Ruth Krauss

Illustrated by Marc Simont

36 pages

HarperCollins

1949

1950 Caldecott Honor Book

 

This book made TurtleAndRobot’s Top 20 Books about Snow as well, but it’s also about spring and it’s a really wonderful book.

It begins under the cover of snow with all the animals sleeping. Soon they are waking up and sniffing. What is it they smell?

They emerge from their burrows and start running and sniffing. They stop, and laugh, and dance! There, in the midst of all the snow and white and cold, a burst of color appears in the form of a beautiful yellow flower.

The delicious, buttery yellow of the flower is the only bit of color in this otherwise black and white picture book.

 

 

Rabbit’s Good Newsrabbitgood

Picture Book

Ages 2-6

By Ruth Lercher Bornstein

32 pages

Clarion

1995

Out of print

 

Ruth Bornstein is the author and illustrator of Little Gorilla, which is an adorable picture book. She uses warm pastel colors in her luminescent art.

A baby rabbit and her family are snuggled in a burrow deep underground. Everyone else is asleep but Rabbit is awake, so she peeks outside. There’s something in the air, something calling to Rabbit, something with a “soft green sound.”

Rabbit leaves the hole to investigate and experience some of the amazing events of spring: green grass, a blooming flower and a bird hatching from an egg.

She returns home to share the good news with her family, “Spring is here.”

 

 

Little White RabbitLittleWhiteRabbit-hc-c

Picture Book

Ages 2-6

By Kevin Henkes

40 pages

Greenwillow

2011

 

Kevin Henkes has published dozens of books for children, from board books to novels. His stories are funny, compassionate, relevant and timeless. His artistic style ranges from soft and subtle to vibrant and active and is always impressive and enticing.

Little White Rabbit is not technically about spring but the soft art and verdant palette embody the feelings of spring.

The little white rabbit hops through grass and wonders what it’s like to be green; soon his whole world is bathed in emerald. He hops past trees and wonders what it’s like to be tall; soon he is peeking out over the tops of the tallest pine. He hops over a rock and tries to imagine staying perfectly still and slowly turning to stone.

In the end, he hops all the way back home to rejoin his loving family.

 

Countdown to Spring: An Animal Counting BookCountdown-to-spring

Picture Book

Ages 2-8

By Janet Schulman

Illustrated by Meilo So

32 pages

Knopf

2002

Out of print

 

Meilo So’s spare, deft watercolors are luscious. Wildflowers bloom in the background as playful animals flutter, crawl, scurry and frolic across the page.

This counting book celebrates spring, starting with one bountiful Easter basket and ending with ten ladybugs crawling; there are also chicks, ducks, squirrels and foxes along the way. 

 

 

And Then It’s SpringAndThenItsSpring

Picture Book

Ages 3-8

By Julie Fogliano

Illustrated by Erin E. Stead

32 pages

Roaring Brook Press

2012

 

And Then It’s Spring, Julie Fogliano’s first book, won her the Ezra Jack Keat’s New Writer Award. This was Erin E. Stead’s second book to be published; her first, A Sick Day for Amos McGee, won her the Caldecott Medal.

“First you have brown, all around you have brown.”

The book opens on a vast, brown landscape. A young boy, with his dog close behind, plants some seeds. And then he must wait. And wait. While he’s waiting he must also keep those seeds safe from birds and careless bears.

Soon the brown starts to whisper and hum about the coming green. And then it’s spring.

Fogliano’s spare and poetic text, coupled with Stead’s finely detailed, delicate, beguiling art produce a book that perfectly portrays both the long wait between the end of winter and the beginning of spring, and all the joy that comes with spotting those first green shoots of the season of renewal.

This pair has another spectacular book, If You Want to See a Whale, due out in May.

 

 

Bear Wants MoreBearWantsMore

Picture Book

Ages 3-8

By Karma Wilson

Illustrated by Jane Chapman

40 pages

Margaret K. McElderry Books

2003

 

This author and illustrator have created several books together about the downright adorable Bear and his friends. The simple, rhyming text flows smoothly and Chapman’s bright art has a fresh, velvety appearance.

At the end of a long winter, Bear wakes up from his hibernation and he is very hungry. He nibbles on some grass, but Bear wants more. He meets up with his friend Mouse and they visit a strawberry patch. Bear eats and eats, but still wants more.

After eating his way through the day, Bear arrives home. His friends have arranged a party for him but he can’t fit through his own door! All of Bear’s friends must work together to dislodge him from the entrance to his den.

When he’s finally freed, Bear eats a little more and goes back to sleep.

 

 

Planting a Rainbowplanting rainbow

Picture Book

Ages 3-9

By Lois Ehlert

40 pages

Sandpiper

1992

 

Ehlert’s vibrant, bold collage art and simple, informative text make this a great book for aspiring gardeners and flower lovers. From planting bulbs in the fall, to ordering seeds in the winter, to waiting for sprouts in the spring until finally a rainbow of colors and a mélange of shapes all come together to form a beautiful garden.

With clear labels and color-coding, it’s easy to follow the steps and teach children about colors, shapes, planting, flowers, gardening and seasons, all with this one beautifully simple book.

 

The Gardenergardener

Picture Book

Ages 3-9

By Sarah Stewart

Illustrated by David Small

40 pages

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

1997

1998 Caldecott Honor Book

 

Young Lydia Grace is moving to the city to help her uncle, who owns a bakery. Lydia Grace does not know anything about baking but she knows everything about gardening and her happy, generous spirit is just what her grumpy uncle needs (even if he doesn’t know it yet).

She immediately sets to work planting everything she can in anything she can, including broken teacups and bent cake pans. One day she finds a secret place and makes great plans for it. Meanwhile, the world around her is blooming and brightening from all her planting.

In a perfect and grand reveal, readers discover that the secret place is a rooftop, now gloriously transformed into a majestic garden by Lydia Grace—who now goes by “The Gardener.”

Told in a series of increasingly jubilant letters from Lydia Grace to her family back home and paired with exquisite art that radiates life, The Gardener possesses all the beauty that comes with spring.

 

 

The Boy Who Didn’t Believe in Springboy who didn't believe in spring

Picture Book

Ages 3-9

By Lucille Clifton

Illustrated by Brinton Turkle

32 Pages

Puffin

Reprint edition: 1992

 

This book was originally published in 1973 (the cover sort of gives that away) and is a distinctly urban-centric story.

King Shabazz doesn’t understand what everyone means when they say spring is just around the corner. He’s never seen this “spring” and he’s sick of everyone talking about it. He wants to find spring for himself, and enlists his friend Tony Polito to help. The two boys explore outside their usual neighborhood to investigate new sounds and smells; they’ve never been past the end of their street before.

Eventually they come across an abandoned car, emitting unfamiliar noises, in an empty lot. As the boys are approaching the car they see a patch of yellow flowers growing amidst the litter in the lot. Once they reach the vehicle they learn that the unfamiliar noise is a mama bird protecting her nest of eggs, prompting the boys to declare, “Man, it’s spring!”

 

 

Home for a BunnyHomeforBunny

Picture Book

Ages 3-9

By Margaret Wise Brown

Illustrated by Garth Williams

32 pages

Golden Books

Reprint edition: 2003

(Originally published in 1956)

 

Margaret Wise Brown is best known for penning Goodnight Moon. Her simple text in this story is rhythmic and lyrical.

Garth Williams has illustrated some of the world’s most beloved books, including Stuart Little, Charlotte’s Web, Bedtime for Frances and The Gingerbread Rabbit. His detailed, lush and comforting art is absolutely exquisite.

Bunny is in search of a home. During his search, he encounters many other animals and learns about the kinds of homes they live in.

When he meets a mother robin and learns about nests, Bunny declares, “Not for me, I would fall out of a nest. I would fall on the ground.”

‘”Where is your home?” he asked the frog. “Wog, wog, wog,” sang the frog. “Wog, wog, wog, Under the water, Down in the bog.”’

Under the water would not be a good place for a bunny to make his home either.

Before long Bunny meets a lovely white rabbit whose home is under a rock and she invites Bunny to stay. It’s a perfect home.

 

 

Bently and Eggbently

Picture Book

Ages 4-10

By William Joyce

32 pages

HarperCollins

1992

Out of print

 

William Joyce’s career spans children’s books, animated films (Rise of the Guardians) and television (Rolie Polie Olie). His intricate and detailed illustrations are stylistically unique and incredibly beautiful.

Bently Hopperton is a young, artistic frog. When his duck friend Kack Kack needs someone to watch over her egg while she visits her sister’s new ducklings, Bently is left to watch over the precious package.

Bently doesn’t like the egg even though all the other animals are quite excited about the joyous turn of events in the recently widowed duck’s life. He decides to spruce up the dull shell by painting it, but a young boy wanders by and takes it, certain it’s been left by the Easter Bunny.

Bently must find the boy who took the egg and shepherd it to safety without it coming to harm, and without his beloved friend discovering. Thus begins a wild adventure. Happily, Bently recovers the egg and gets it back to its mother just in time for the beautiful baby duck to hatch. Kack Kack decides to name her new son Ben, after her hero Bently.

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Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award goes to Julie Fogliano!

AndThenItsSpring

Congratulations to Julie Fogliano, friend of TurtleAndRobot and author of And Then It’s Spring (illustrated by Erin E. Stead) for winning the Ezra Jack Keats New Writer Award for Children’s Books! A well deserved award for a stunningly talented writer.

Read all about it here.

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TurtleAndRobot:

In honor of the forthcoming Caldecott and Newbery announcement (on January 28th, 2013) Philip and Erin Stead, author and illustrator of A Sick Day for Amos McGee (the 2011 Caldecott winner) and Bear Has a Story to Tell, announce their Phildecott and Steadbery Awards, aka their “Best of 2012″ list.

Includes bonus thoughts on the importance of bookstores and the perseverance of the printed book.

Enjoy!

 

Originally posted on Philip Stead Illustration | A Home for Bird, Jonathan and the Big Blue Boat, Creamed Tuna Fish and Peas on Toast, A Sick Day for Amos McGee, Bear Has a Story to Tell:

But first, a Short Essay Regarding the Importance of the Independent Bookstore

From the Cluttered Desk of Philip Stead (with Erin sitting close by):

The twenty-first century has had a rocky start for lovers of bookstores and real, paper books. The advent of e-bookery coupled with Wall Street’s unfortunate shenanigans has created an environment in which many stores have had to close their doors. Here in Ann Arbor we lost Shaman Drum, our downtown indie store that had peddled books to students and townies alike for more than three decades. Next was Borders, an Ann Arbor institution that began as a small indie shop on State Street. Long before her career as a bookmaker Erin worked at the downtown Borders. She tended the children’s section. It’s strange now to walk by its empty shell.

Throughout all this I’ve believed (or, more accurately, wanted to believe) that there’s…

View original 2,927 more words

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Horn Book Fanfare 2012: The Best Children’s and YA Books of the Year

Once again, it thrills me to congratulate friends of TurtleAndRobot!

 

Philip C. Stead: A Home for Bird; written and illustrated by Philip C. Stead (Porter/Roaring Brook)

Erin E. Stead and Julie Fogliano: And Then It’s Spring; written by Julie Fogliano, illustrated by Erin E. Stead (Porter/Roaring Brook)

Jason Chin: Island: A Story of the Galápagos; written and illustrated by Jason Chin (Porter/Roaring Brook)

 

See the full list here.

Comments (2) »

Kirkus Reviews’ Best Children’s Books of 2012

Special congratulations to Book of Wonder alumni and friends of TurtleAndRobot!

Hades by George O’Connor

And Then It’s Spring by Julie Fogliano, Illustrated by Erin E. Stead

A Home for Bird by Philip C. Stead

Bear Has a Story to Tell by Philip C. Stead, Illustrated by Erin E. Stead

Island by Jason Chin

 

View the full List Here

Comments (5) »

Publishers Weekly picks their best children’s books for 2012.

Picture Books

Special congratulations to friends of TurtleAndRobot, Philip C. Stead, Erin E. Stead and Julie Fogliano!

Fiction

 

Non-Fiction

Comments (4) »

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