Applesauce Season

Applesauce Season

5.0 2
by Eden Ross Lipson, Mordicai Gerstein

View All Available Formats & Editions

When the first apples of the season--Ida Red and Paula Red, Twenty Ounce, McIntosh, and Ginger Gold--show up in the city markets, it's time to take out the big pot and make applesauce. Eden Lispon's lovingly recounted description of a family's applesauce-making ritual describes the buying, peeling, cooking and stirring; the wait for the sauce to cool and the first

…  See more details below


When the first apples of the season--Ida Red and Paula Red, Twenty Ounce, McIntosh, and Ginger Gold--show up in the city markets, it's time to take out the big pot and make applesauce. Eden Lispon's lovingly recounted description of a family's applesauce-making ritual describes the buying, peeling, cooking and stirring; the wait for the sauce to cool and the first taste. Mordicai Gerstein's paintings are full of the colors and flavors of the season: red apples, orange leaves, blue skies. Here's a lovely picture book celebrating an American family tradition.

Editorial Reviews

The New York Times Book Review
[A] smartly observed, warm-hearted tale . . . . Happily there is more than enough for seconds.
The angle of Dad's shoulders as he squeezes between everyone to reach in with his spoon is one of those brilliant details in a children's book that conveys the warmth of family.
The San Francisco Chronicle
Exuberant watercolors follow along as a happy urban family buys, quarters, cooks, seasons, purees and savors the thick gooey stuff. Get out the food mill.
Horn Book
The final page includes a detailed recipe and an illustration of the boy, now a dad, in the kitchen cutting apples with his daughter, sharing a smile.
A wonderful story of apples, applesauce and family traditions.
Leonard S. Marcus
Tolstoy was wrong: happy families are not all alike. Some make applesauce, and those who do, the author of this smartly observed, warm-hearted tale implies, are almost surely the better for it…Gerstein, who won the 2004 Caldecott Medal for The Man Who Walked Between the Towers, draws in a wiry, kinetic line that touches down lightly on the page…these gravity-defying, dreamlike images seem to nod approvingly at the untamed spirit that drives the pursuit of any glorious obsession.
—The New York Times
Kristi Jemtegaard
Young readers will savor the process from beginning to end: choosing…washing, chopping, cooking, grinding, seasoning…and, of course, tasting…Lipson blends a lyrical text with a practical approach (adults do the chopping and handle the hot stuff), and Gerstein's exuberant illustrations washed in yellows and reds evoke the smell of sweet steam in a sunny kitchen.
—The Washington Post
Publishers Weekly
This is the first and only picture book by Lipson, the longtime New York Times children's books editor who died in May; it stands as a wonderful tribute to her considerable contributions and talents. Accompanied by Gerstein's (A Book) gemütlich vignettes, Lipson introduces a family of urban-dwellers whose ties that bind are made of applesauce. As the youngest child and narrator explains, from “just about the time school opens, when it is still hot and summery but vacation is over,” until December, the family, with Grandma at the helm, comes together to produce pots and pots of homemade puree. Lipson's down-to-earth lyricism makes it clear that every step of the process has its rewards—even shopping inspires the narrator to savor the panoply of apples at the farmers' market (“first come Ida Red and Paula Red, Twenty Ounce and MacIntosh, Ginger Gold and Jonagold”). Best of all, applesauce season brings out the connoisseur in everyone: in one of the funniest scenes, Gerstein shows the narrator and his family adjusting the seasoning with the scholarly intensity of chemists. The book is a terrific nudge toward establishing family cooking rituals—the recipe on the final page should close the deal. Ages 4–8. (Aug.)
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Our narrator relates his delight at the arrival of applesauce season. Living in the city, the family purchases apples in the farmers' market, reveling in the many varieties available there. With his mother and grandmother, he goes step by step through making a pot of the sauce, from the cutting to the cooking, the grinding in the food mill, and the seasoning. It is the main character's dad who uses the applesauce, making something to go with it (e.g., pancakes) or using it to make something else (e.g., apple cake). The whole family celebrates many different kinds of applesauce until the season is over. The final choice, between applesauce and apple pie, however, remains up in the air. Gerstein's sketchy, lively ink-and-mixed-media illustrations of the process add verve to what might have been an unexciting sequence. Scenes vary in size and contextual details, but each is consistently full of happy family togetherness with perhaps a touch of nostalgia. Appetites may be further stimulated by the varieties of apples depicted with the characters on the end pages, as well as the included recipe. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—Urban meets bucolic in this charming family story that is narrated by a family's youngest child. "We live in the city. There are no apple trees, but there are farmer's markets where there are lots of apples." That's where the boy and his grandmother shop. They choose the fruit, wash it, cut it up, cook it, and finally run it through the food mill. Then comes the eating, "…plain, or with ice cream, or cottage cheese, or gingerbread, or cookies, or sliced bananas." This is not a long book but it's filled with enticing details. Even the names of the varieties are fun: Black Twig, King David, Northern Spy. A celebration of family ritual and slow foods, the story is in the best tradition of "show, don't tell." Gerstein's colorful paintings are edged with dynamic scratchy lines that convey a lively sense of movement. His sly humor is a perfect match for the straightforward narrative, which ends with a recipe and a glimpse into the boy's sunny future-full of apples, of course.—Lauralyn Persson, Wilmette Public Library, IL
Kirkus Reviews
Flavored with family tradition and spiced with Gerstein's cheerful illustrations, this account of one family's love of applesauce hits the spot. One day "when it is still hot and summery, but vacation is over," Grandma says, "It's time for applesauce." The city-dwelling family buys apples ("at least three different kinds") at an outdoor market. The names and varieties of apples and the details of cooking change as the season progresses, with the subtle variations in the process lovingly detailed in both text and image. The "first sauce of the season" is celebrated and toasted at a special gathering of family and friends, while later Grandpa is remembered on his birthday with a candle-bedecked pie. The child narrator (who sports round, red glasses just like Grandma's) wonders whether he'll prefer pie to sauce when he grows up, while the illustrations project a future generation of apple lovers, a poignant touch for this last book by the late Lipson. In a crowded orchard of apple books, this one stands out for home or school apple- and/or family-tradition projects. Applesauce recipe appended. (Picture book. 4-8)

Read More

Product Details

Roaring Brook Press
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
8.70(w) x 11.10(h) x 0.40(d)
AD940L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network


Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >

Applesauce Season 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago