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Big Pumpkin

Big Pumpkin

4.5 17
by Erica Silverman, S.D. Schindler (Illustrator)

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The witch has grown the biggest pumpkin ever, and now she wants to make herself a pumpkin pie for Halloween. But the pumpkin is so big she can't get it off the vine.
It's so big the ghost can't move it, either. Neither can the vampire, nor the mummy. It looks as if there'll be no pumpkin pie for Halloween, until along comes the bat with an idea to save the day.


The witch has grown the biggest pumpkin ever, and now she wants to make herself a pumpkin pie for Halloween. But the pumpkin is so big she can't get it off the vine.
It's so big the ghost can't move it, either. Neither can the vampire, nor the mummy. It looks as if there'll be no pumpkin pie for Halloween, until along comes the bat with an idea to save the day.
How can the tiny bat succeed where bigger and strong spooky creatures have failed? You'll be surprised!

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
A rhythmic text and a vibrant palette combine in a Halloween tale noteworthy for its finely tuned balance of drama and comedy. A green-faced witch, with pickle-shaped nose and chin, decides to mark the holiday by baking a pumpkin pie. But the pumpkin she's planted is stuck on the vine. A gallery of graveyard ghouls comes to her aid--first a translucent white ghost, then a smartly dressed vampire, a tightly bound mummy and, finally, a bat with a bright idea. Their breezy conversations create a pleasantly sinister mood that stops just short of being scary. Accordingly, in Schindler's hands the cast looks not so much spooky as spirited. The eye-catching full-spread illustrations, in rich hues of orange and blue, capture the midnight magic, while dropped-out type adds an extra dash of mystery. A fine combination of fright and fun. Ages 4-8. (Aug.)
Children's Literature - Jan Lieberman
Like Tolstoy's Great Enormous Turnip, Silverman's Big Pumpkin wont's budge from the ground even with the witch's magic. On a Halloween eve, help comes from unusual sources: a ghost, a mummy, a vampire, and a bat who all discover that cooperation is the only way to budge a stubborn pumpkin. Action-filled paintings add to the fun of this cumulative adventure. The pulling and tugging sequences build in their power and hilarity. 1995 (orig.
Children's Literature - Susie Wilde
This story is a perfect for young listeners who still seek comfort during Halloween and who are ready for a story. The repetition, internal rhymes, and places for chorusing involve and reassure young listeners. The story presents traditionally frightening figures in a friendly light. The tale centers on a green-faced, grumpy witch who is craving a piece of pumpkin pie, but she can't separate her huge pumpkin from its vine. A ghost, vampire, and mummy believe themselves strong enough to triumph, but they find that success only comes with cooperation. The satisfying end brings shared pumpkin pie and friendship, providing yet another subtle reassurance. There are also sounds and speech that make this a natural read-aloud for parents.
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2-- A rollicking, amusing Halloween tale. Based on the Russian folktale ``The Turnip,'' it's the cumulative tale of a witch who plants a pumpkin seed in anticipation of a Halloween pie. When the pumpkin grows too large, however, she finds she needs the help of some fitting wanderers: ghost, vampire, mummy, and a little bat. Some nice lessons are learned: the need for help from others, the joy of sharing, and that everyone--no matter what size-- has something to offer. The text is rhythmic and repetitive, making it a surefire success for story hours or read-alouds. Schindler's richly colored illustrations lend humor and give a lively feeling to the characters and plot, helping to make the story nonthreatening for the youngest of readers. The book starts with a large border, and the pictures and the pumpkin grow as large as the page. Rousing good fun for the Halloween season and far beyond. --Elizabeth Hanson, Chicago Pub . Lib .

Product Details

Publication date:
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
10.00(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.10(d)
AD350L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Erica Silverman is the author of several books including Big Pumpkin; When the Chickens Went on Strike, which was a Sydney Taylor Honor book; and Sholom's Treasure, which won the Sydney Taylor Award and was a runner-up for the National Jewish Book Award. Her books have received the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Gold Award, the California Young Reader Medal, ABA Pick of the List, and the first book in her early-reader series Cowgirl Kate and Cocoa won the Theodore Seuss Geisel Honor. She lives in Los Angeles, California. Visit her at www.ericasilverman.com.

S. D. Schindler is the popular and versatile illustrator of many books for children, including Big Pumpkin and the ALA Notable Book Don't Fidget a Feather, both by Erica Silverman, How Santa Got His Job by Stephen Krensky, and Johnny Appleseed by Rosemary and Stephen Vincent Benét. He lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

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The Big Pumpkin 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My 3 daughters had me read this book to them all the time. It was loved to death. Now they are adults and have bought the book to share with others. It is one of their favorite childhood memories.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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AndreaEM More than 1 year ago
I bought this for my daughter two years ago and she reads it year around! It's a fun book and great for your Halloween collection.
J_Luck More than 1 year ago
I bought this book five years ago when my eldest daughter was in kindergarten. Now my kids and I take it out every October and read it several times for Halloween (we also read it during other times of the year but it has become a Halloween tradition for us). My older children are now out of the age range that this book is meant for, but they still appreciate how cute this book is, and they will listen as I read it to my youngest child. The text is fun and the illustrations are wonderful. This has become one of my all-time favorite books for kids. :)
Guest More than 1 year ago
I first heard this story when I taught preschoolers. It has a tape that accompanies the story that is WONDERFUL. It's a MUST with the book because it's like watching a movie/cartoon but you're actually READING with your little one. I really recommend you purchase this story WITH the tape if you can find it. It is really well made - acted out on tape with music. Because of this story/tape combo, all other books I purchased with tapes/CDs are sadly lacking.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Im a Early Preschool teacher and all of my two year olds LOVE this book. We all have the book memorized and even our youngest kids sit still to listen to the book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a good book on SO many levels. It is a fun read, and fun as a mom to read aloud. It has great repetition and word usage, the illustrations are engaging, the story is great. It also presents what could otherwise be considered 'scary' characters in a non threatening way. No fears of ghosts, witches, vampires or mummys in THIS house.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Love It! My son loves to say 'Drat'.. engages him at an early age. Wish we had the audio tape!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Erica Silverman. Big Pumpkin Illus. by S.D. Schindler Scholastic. 1992. I.S.B.N 0-590-47760-9 Big Pumpkin is fun, spirited, and educational. Readers watch as new friendships are formed and more colorful characters are introduced. This monster-filled book revolves around the fact that nothing is stronger than working together. Many lessons are learned despite the Halloween theme. Readers learn how to work together and share. The characters learn to respect each other and to see past appearances. Patience and hard work give rewards. The repetition teaches readers to recall words, which will help them to learn how to read. The recommended age for readers is ages 5 and up. From experience, I have found that kindergarteners enjoy Big Pumpkin, especially before Halloween. The illustrations are wonderful, for they show the character¿s emotions. The pictures are so clear, and the colors are bold, yet softened. The effect is so wonderful that it is indescribable. The pictures really pull young readers in. Big Pumpkin evolves around Halloween friendships, but the book also teaches many inspiring lessons. Most importantly, it is fun and brings parents and children together to read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
We read this book 'all year long'! Needless to say we have it memorized! So when my three year old gets bored sitting in the grocery cart, we tell the story to each other from memory and have a great laugh and the shopping time passes by quickly! This book is a 'must have' for all little people! Thank you Erica Silverman for writing such a terrific children's book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Amazing book!! When I was in the first grade, I'd listen to the audio tape version of the book and follow along with it. And now eight years later I can still repeat the book word for word! It's musical tape is extraordinary and now I still love reading it. The characters and setting of the book seem to come alive and I highly recommend all first grade teachers to purchase it for there students. They'll love it, as I certainly did.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this book to my daughter's kindergarten class and they loved it. Since then I have read it to my kids at home and they like to hear it again and again. Because the words are sort of repetitive, my five year old can 'read' the book to me and I love that! She remembers the words and is using them to develop her beginning stages of reading. I also should mention that the illustrations in this book are fabulous. I especially love the Vampire, and each time I see him pulling on the pumpkin, it makes me smile. The book also has a message about working together and also realizing that just becuase someone does not appear big or strong, they can still be greatly helpful in certain tough situations. I love this book and so do my children...I am so glad I stumbled upon it one day in Barnes & Noble.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Wish there were more than five stars to rate this story. This book has a wonderful story line to it and as a parent or teacher you can focus on the need for people to work together and to share. In the end, because they all worked together, the group shares a delicious piece of pumpkin pie. A great book for children and for adults!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read and sing this book to my first grade students every October. They love this book and ask me to read it over and over again. If you are familiar with the book, The Great, Big, Enormous Turnip, you will note similarities in this story. Really a great, fun read for young children. BUY IT! If you can get a copy of the CD or tape that comes with it, you will enjoy it even more.