Monday, March 5, 2012
The Story Blanket (Hardcover) reviews
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Reading Level: Ages 4-8
Publisher: Peachtree Publishers
Release date: September 1, 2008
Product Dimensions: 10.7 inches x 9.2 inches x 0.4 inches; 13.6 ounces
Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces ...
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From School Library Journal
PreSchool-Grade 2—Babba Zarrah, a caring and talented senior, lives in a tiny mountain village—perhaps in Russia. She has a large, colorful, knitted blanket upon which the children love to sit as they listen to her stories. Noticing that there are some in the snow-covered village who have needs that she can satisfy, she unravels a bit of wool from the blanket and knits, then secretly delivers warm socks for young Nikolai, who has a hole in his shoe; an extra-long scarf for the postman; and cozy mittens for the schoolmaster to wear when he fetches wood. Each new project leads to thoughts of another, until the story blanket has completely disappeared. Then, it is up to the curious villagers to discover who is creating the gifts and find a way to thank their elderly neighbor for her kindness. Odriozola's charming illustrations make this sweet tale of a close-knit community even more special. The bright colors and delicate patterns in the children's and Babba Zarrah's clothing and the story blanket stand out against stark white backgrounds. A fine brown line surrounds garments and objects, giving some pieces a paper-collage appearance. In contrast, the rounded, rosy-cheeked faces are drawn with the same thin lines and minimal features—tiny dots for eyes, small squiggles for noses, wee marks for mouths. From the spare wood floor and the children clustered in anticipation on the blanket under a potted indoor tree comes a warm invitation to enjoy this sweet story again and again.—Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, OH
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"...charming illustrations make this sweet tale of a close-knit community even more special...enjoy this sweet story again and again." --School Library Journal
"...sweetly vivid..." --Booklist
"...a low-key discussion starter." --Kirkus
"The Story Blanket ranks among those exceptional picture books in which the story, illustrations, page layout, and design all come together to offer a phenomenal reading experience...a special volume to share with every picture-book lover you know." --Bloomsbury Review
"Storytellers and readers aloud will appreciate the text's graceful yet restrained language and children will enjoy the plot's cozy circularity..." --Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"A story to spread warmth and cheer on the coldest nights." --Smithsonian Magazine Online
"Absolutely beautiful..." --Virginian Pilot
"Rosy-cheeked children and the bright folk art quilt suggest a timelessness to the story as well as the underlying message." --Library Media Connection
"Beautifully rendered in every way..." --Orlando Press-Register Product Description
Babba Zarrah lives in a tiny village in the snow-covered mountains. The children love to visit her. They settle down on her big, old story blanket and listen to her imaginative tales. One day Babba Zarrah notices that Nikolai needs new socks, but she has no yarn. Every question has an answer, Babba Zarrah tells herself, I just have to find it. After the children leave, she unravels part of her story blanket and knits him some nice warm socks.
Not long after that, the postman is surprised to find a scarf wrapped around his mailbag. The grocer mysteriously receives a shawl to keep her warm. On the woodpile outside the school is a pair of mittens for the schoolmaster. Meanwhile, the story blanket is getting smaller and smaller. When the villagers discover Babba Zarrah s secret, they decide to give her a surprise of her own.
About the Author
Ferida Wolff is a Peachtree Publishing author.Ferida Wolff worked as a teacher and a journalist before becoming a writer. She has published sixteen books, including IT IS THE WIND. She lives in New Jersey.
Harriet May Savitz has had over twenty-four books published. RUN, DON T WALK, nominated for the California Young Reader Medal, was made into an ABC Afterschool Special produced by Henry Winkler. She is a recipient of the PSLA Outstanding Pennsylvania Author Award. She lives in New Jersey.