Synopses & Reviews
Five giant sisters meet their match in one tiny baby!
Back when folks first discovered granite, five burly sisters ruled the mountains of New Hampshire. No problem was too big for those women. But when one sister carves a real live baby out of granite, a big problem appears that is, you might say, too small.
Lil Fella wailed so much that no one north of the Kancamagus Highway could eat, sleep, or plow. "Do something!" everyone demanded. But what? The five gals, who are strong enough to move mountains, are flummoxed . . . until a young backwoods girl named Nellie offers a small, simple suggestion.
With its droll humor and inventive, witty pictures, this uproarious tall tale is a true original - one not to be missed.
"Wild, rollicking, and boopsie-cute, this tall tale scampers over the granite hilltops of New Hampshire without a misstep. When Jade, Em, Golda, Ruby and Beryl, five Amazon-scaled, colossally talented women, open a quarry, everything goes smoothly until the creative bug bites Beryl. She starts carving a picnic lunch one day, 'granite root beer and finger sandwiches, granite dip and deviled eggs.' As a finale, she approaches some pink granite and says, 'Watch as I carve it into a real live baby.' Her creation, Lil Fella, comes to life; he 'cried, wailed, screamed, and hollered till you could actually see his yellin' in the crisp New Hampshere air.' For all their strength and talent, the five sisters cannot comfort him. 'Pretty soon nobody north of the Kancamagus Highway could eat, sleep or plow.' In Hawke's (Weslandia) bucolic spreads, clouds of letters spew from Lil Fella's mouth it's a great running gag. Bertrand's (One Day, Two Dragons) storytelling talent is as titanic as her heroines', and while her down-home diction would seem to be more likely overheard in Appalachia than New England, it's charming all the same. A girl named Nellie has to teach the sisters how to tone down their Bunyan-esque impulses before Lil Fella will quiet down. Readers of every size will roar at Bertrand's whoppers, and they will also enjoy a new twist on broad-shouldered American fables: sometimes smaller is better. Not to be missed. Ages 4-8." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"A refreshingly original tale, this yarn will enthrall storytime audiences."
-- Bulletin for the Center of Children's Books
"Splendid." -- Starred, Booklist "Wild, rollicking, and boopsie-cute, this tall tale scampers over the granite hilltops of New Hampshire without a misstep. Bertrand's storytelling talent is as titanic as her heroines'. Not to be missed." -- Publishers Weekly"Delightful. The story is well told, the setting is clearly described, and the vocabulary has a down-home flavor that adds to its comforting tone. Hawkes's..paintings are filled with interesting details. This rock-solid tale will quickly become a favorite." -- School Library Journal
"Fans of...similar outsized yarns will holler with glee at this new arrival." -- Starred, Kirkus Reviews
"Bertrand's text, loaded with folksy humor and a good dose of exaggeration, is well matched by Hawkes's color-drenched paintings, which include fantastic details while capturing the story's vast scale." -- The Horn Book
Back when folks first discovered granite, five burly sisters ruled the mountains of New Hampshire. When one sister carves a real live baby out of granite, a big problem appears. With its droll humor and inventive, witty pictures, this tall tale is a true original. Full color.
About the Author
's One Day, Two Dragons was a New York Times Book Review Notable Book. She lives in Williamsburg, Massachusetts.
Kevin Hawkes is the acclaimed illustrator of books such as The Man Who Made Time Travel by Kathryn Lasky, an ALA Notable Book, and Weslandia by Paul Fleischman. He lives in Gorham, Maine.