Monday, July 21, 2008

Readers' Picks--What Library Staff are Reading--Part VI

This week's recommendation comes from Betsy Fronk, our resident young adult and children's enthusiast. Betsy is a reviewer for children's books, and she keeps up with the latest as well as the classics in reads for the young and young-at-heart. Here is her review of this classic which won the Caldecott medal in 1945.

"Everyone in the Amish community calls Jonathan, “Yonie”, a very curious seven year-old. Yonie’s father calls him “Yonie Wandernose” because Yonie always wanders off trying to satisfy his curiosity. One afternoon, Yonie’s father leaves with mother and the older children. Granny and little Nancy remain behind; Pop makes a special promise to Yonie if he can do as he has been told. He tries to do his chores around the farm and he does very well until he seems to lose Granny. She gets locked in the chicken house; this might have been a good time to be 'a Wondernose.' As night falls, a thunderstorm begins with lightning. The lightning starts a fire in the barn. Yonie rescues many of the farm animals and when his father arrives, they gather the animals together. Yonie’s father rewards Yonie for the good care of the animals. This picture book received a Caldecott Honor award in 1945 so some of the language may appear a bit old-fashioned. However, Yonnie’s coming-of-age and a gentle exposure to a different culture are ageless; de Angeli’s beautiful pencil illustrations add much warmth to the story.

Kindergarteners through second grade students can enjoy this story as well as older students wanting to see the Amish community."

Image credit to Herald Press.

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