Child magazine's Best Children's Book Awards 2004
Coming on Home Soonby Jacqueline Woodson, E. B. Lewis (Illustrator)
Ada Ruth's mama must go away to Chicago to work, leaving Ada Ruth and Grandma behind. It's war time, and women are needed to fill the men's jobs. As winter sets in, Ada Ruth and her grandma keep up their daily routine, missing Mama all the time. They find strength in each other, and a stray kitten even arrives one day to keep them company, but nothing can fill the
Ada Ruth's mama must go away to Chicago to work, leaving Ada Ruth and Grandma behind. It's war time, and women are needed to fill the men's jobs. As winter sets in, Ada Ruth and her grandma keep up their daily routine, missing Mama all the time. They find strength in each other, and a stray kitten even arrives one day to keep them company, but nothing can fill the hole Mama left. Every day they wait, watching for the letter that says Mama will be coming on home soon. Set during World War II, Coming On Home Soon has a timeless quality that will appeal to all who wait and hope.
Child magazine's Best Children's Book Awards 2004
Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
"Perfectly matched words and illustrations masterfully bring to life all the emotions that the girl is experiencing as she, her grandmother, and a stray kitten that has come to stay all try to comfort and console one another."—School Library Journal
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Meet the Author
Born on February 12th in Columbus, Ohio, Jacqueline Woodson grew up in Greenville, South Carolina, and Brooklyn, New York and graduated from college with a B.A. in English. She now writes full-time and has recently received the Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement in writing for young adults. Her other awards include a Newbery Honor, two Coretta Scott King awards, two National Book Award finalists, and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize. Although she spends most of her time writing, Woodson also enjoys reading the works of emerging writers and encouraging young people to write, spending time with her friends and her family, and sewing. Jacqueline Woodson currently resides in Brooklyn, New York.
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This is a beautiful story that exemplifies the strength that can be drawn from a family¡¦s love for one another. The pictures depict the feelings of the harsh winter and the lonesomeness brought out by the mother¡¦s absence. Ada Ruth is a younger girl who is struggling with the separation from her mother. She still has her grandmother and has taken to the care of a stray kitten, but she longs for her mother¡¦s care. Each day she writes to her mother and awaits news of her return. The reader connects to Ada Ruth¡¦s character, as they too can imagine the feelings they would experience if their mother were to leave. It also develops a sense of admiration for the women of that time who stepped up to the roles of the men. It was a time of war, and the men were responsible for fighting for our country¡¦s rights and freedom. For many women, and in the case of Ada Ruth¡¦s mother, this meant leaving their families and finding work in order to provide financially. When Ada Ruth and the grandmother receive the long-awaited letter from the mother, the reader recognizes their relief and excitement. In closed was money and her promise of ¡§coming on home soon.¡¨ The story ends with an image of the mother making her way back home through the snow.
Coming on Home Soon is a story about a little girl named Ada Ruth, whose mother must go away to work during the war. Ada Ruth misses her mother so much. She watches the mail everyday hoping for a letter from her mother ¿when the postman goes on by without stopping, Grandma says, hush now. Don't start that crying¿. She and her grandmother listen to the radio at night to hear of news about the war. She explains, ¿When Grandma turns the radio off, I rub my hand along the kitten¿s back and think about the women working on the trains. Just think. My mama right there beside them¿. Although Ada Ruth is sad she has a strong sense of pride for what her mother is accomplishing. This book was a Caldecott Honor Book in 2005. This book is appropriate for children ages 4-8. This is a touching story that kids can relate, especially those who may have a loved one in the war right now. Jacqueline Woodson has won many awards for her picture books and novels. One very famous book is The Other Side. The illustrator is E.B. Lewis who has also won many awards. Woodson, Jacqueline. Coming on Home Soon. New York: G.P. Putnam¿s Sons, 2004.
¿Coming On Home Soon¿ was an excellent book. It really deserved the Caldecott Medal. The illustrations were wonderful, very creative and wonderful use of color. The illustrations go along with the storyline. Jacqueline Woodson writes about issues that children or all ages face. She does a wonderful job illustrating the problem that many families faced in the 'old days' as well as in the present time. Not only can the children that have experienced losing a family member to war or a job that takes them away but Woodson really allows the audience to be able to connect to Ada Ruth emotionally. Especially when she writes ¿when the postman goes on by without stopping, Grandma says, hush now. Don't start that crying.¿ Everyone has experienced that time when a loved one is gone away for a period of time and you can't wait to hear from them. But every time the postman passes by your house all you feel is disappointment and tears.