Synopses & Reviews
This inventive picture book relays the events of two hundred years from the unique perspective of a magnificent oak tree, showing how much the world can transform from a single vantage point. From 1775 to the present day, this fascinating framing device lets readers watch as human and animal populations shift and the landscape transitions from country to city. Methods of transportation, communication and energy use progress rapidly while other things hardly seem to change at all.
This engaging, eye-opening window into history is perfect for budding historians and nature enthusiasts alike, and the time-lapse quality of the detail-packed illustrations will draw readers in as they pore over each spread to spot the changes that come with each new era. A fact-filled poster is included to add to the fun.
"This engaging picture book clearly presents a wealth of information." Booklist
“Engaging tale of transformation and constancy. . . . [Invites] comparisons between elements in each spread and their more modern counterparts that follow. . . . A rapidly modernizing society, the resultant impact on the environment, and the constant, observant presence of nature are themes readers can start to grasp with this book. More simply, its a charming cycle-of-life story and an engaging chronicle of American urban history.”
“Engaging. . . . Karass straightforward narration is informative and reflective. Detailed watercolor illustrations dramatically show the landscape evolving from rural to urban over time. . . . This fascinating time capsule will spark nature and history discussions.”
“Clear and simple look at over two centuries of change in a single landscape. . . . Karas avoids editorializing. . . . Art has a friendly, intimate quality. . . . This will invite repeat visits.”
“Illustrations allow readers to see how generations alter the landscape . . . and variations in farming practices as well as the development of differing modes of transportation.”
“The sweep of Karas pencil and gouache full-bleed spreads has all the majesty of good landscape, with the stately tree firmly rooted in the center of every scene, but his homey and accessible draftsmanship keeps the details human as well as intricate. . . . The hilltop prospect provides a particularly fine vista, and audiences will appreciate the small dramas and subtle alterations as well as the significant changes. If youre near any large trees, this could spark your own local trip through history.”
The little house first stood in the country, but gradually the city moved closer and closer.
Virginia Lee Burton won the Caldecott Medal in 1943 for her memorable picture book The Little House, a poignant story of a cute country cottage that becomes engulfed by the city that grows up around it. The house has an expressive face of windows and doors, and even the feelings of a person, so sheand#8217;s sad when sheand#8217;s surrounded by the dirty, noisy cityand#8217;s hustle and bustle: and#8220;She missed the field of daisies / and the apple trees dancing in the moonlight.and#8221; Fortunately, thereand#8217;s a happy ending, as the house is taken back to the country where she belongs. A classic!
About the Author
Virginia Lee Burton (1909-1968) was the talented author and illustrator of some of the most enduring books ever written for children. The winner of the 1942 Caldecott Medal for THE LITTLE HOUSE, Burton's books include heroes and happy endings, lively illustrations, and a dash of nostalgia. She lived with her two sons, Aristides and Michael, and her husband George Demetrios, the sculptor, in a section of Gloucester, Massachusetts, called Folly Cove. Here she taught a class in design and from it emerged the Folly Cove designers, a group of internationally known professional artisans. She is the author of many classic children's picture books, including MIKE MULLIGAN AND HIS STEAM SHOVEL and KATY AND THE BIG SNOW.