Monday, October 14, 2013

Book Review - Old House, New House


Old House, New House

By: Phillis Gershator
Illustrated by: Katherine Potter
Publisher: Two Lions
Publication Date: April 2009
ISBN: 978-0761453864
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler
Review Date: October 2013

Bushes surrounded the little old house that had a welcoming rocking chair on its porch and an apple orchard in the back. A tiny house stood off to the right and black-eyed Susans twinkled their welcome to the little girl and her family, including her teddy bear. “The house had no pipes, / no faucets, no sink, / but it had a well / and good water to drink.” There were lots of things for little girls to look at and explore. There was that red cranberry bog, the sound of a creek, the frogs, and the little mice in the house. There were other things she’d find that summer.

“I made friends with the mice / and the family down the road / and the pigs that oinked / and the rooster that crowed.” Ah, it was fun to get that egg from the hen while the cat stood watch and it was fun to pick berries. Of course that pie from those berries was even better. Have you ever had a bath in a washtub? The little girl did and even loved that, but there was one problem with all that fun. The summer would soon be over and it would be time to leave that little old house and the friends she’d made. Would she really have to leave that very special place?

This is a charming tale of a little girl’s very special summer in a little old house. Of course all those special times were going to have to end as they often do in “real” life. The little girl was in distress at the very thought of having to leave what she had learned to love and grieved at what she would miss in the old house. Transitioning from one place to another can be difficult, but this charming tale can help ease the angst. This story in rhyme, told in ballad form (the second and forth lines rhyming), has a calm lilt to the verse. The artwork, rendered in chalk pastels, exudes an aura of childlike innocence from that “perfect” summer. This would be a nice read and discuss tale in the homeschool or classroom setting.

Quill says: If you are planning a move, this is the perfect book to read to your little ones!