Harvey Potter's Balloon Farm

Harvey Potter's Balloon Farm

4.9 12
by Jerdine Nolen, Mark Buehner
     
 

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Harvey Potter was a very strange fellow indeed. He was a farmer, but he didn't farm like my daddy did. He farmed a genuine, U.S. Government Inspected Balloon Farm.

So begins this enchanting original tall tale. Set in the rural south and populated with a truly unforgettable cast of characters—including, if you look very carefully, a rabbit, a Tyrannosaurus rex,

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Overview

Harvey Potter was a very strange fellow indeed. He was a farmer, but he didn't farm like my daddy did. He farmed a genuine, U.S. Government Inspected Balloon Farm.

So begins this enchanting original tall tale. Set in the rural south and populated with a truly unforgettable cast of characters—including, if you look very carefully, a rabbit, a Tyrannosaurus rex, a cat, a chicken, a cow, and a pig hidden in each remarkable illustration—this is a book that is filled with wonderful impossibilities and magical imagination. Told in the great tradition of summer nights and front porch yarns, Harvey Potter's Balloon Farm will lift your spirit right off the ground, just as it does Harvey Potter.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Everything's coming up balloons in this original tale about Harvey Potter, a ``very strange fellow,'' and his unusual crop. As recounted by a local observer, Potter seems to have a latex thumb and has raised balloons in all sizes and shapes, in colors like ``Pleasin' Purple,'' ``Orange-Ray Sun'' and ``Jelly-Bean Black.'' Such spectacle naturally piques the curiosity of townsfolk and prompts the female narrator to perform a secret investigation of Harvey's planting methods. Perched in a tree one night, she witnesses a sort of dancing ritual that Harvey performs with a magic ``conjure stick,'' and her life is changed forever. Debut author Nolen's full-bodied text is peppered with shades of a Southern dialect and has the cozy feel of a back porch storytelling session. Her fiercely independent characters add even more pizzazz. Buehner's ( The Adventures of Taxi Dog ) rich acrylics are chock-full of zippy colors. His expert use of light and shadow makes a day in the fields look downright glorious. And the sea of bright balloons growing straight and proud is something to behold. Ages 4-up. (Apr.)
School Library Journal
K-Gr 4-This is the best sort of fantasy-imaginative, inventive, and believable. Harvey Potter is a wonder-he's the owner of a genuine U.S. Government Inspected Balloon farm. And Nolen's tale about this man, narrated by the African-American girl who learns balloon-farming magic from him, is equally wondrous. The author's understated, down-home text combines with Buehner's rich, rounded paintings to create a most satisfying whole. Buehner is a master character painter who gives three-dimensional life to the girl, Harvey, and all the wonderful balloons. This title should sail onto every library shelf. May Nolen grow a bumper crop of books.-Kathleen Whalin, Greenwich Country Day School, CT
Mary Harris Veeder
In this original tall tale, Harvey Potter runs "a genuine, U.S. Government Inspected Balloon Farm." The storyteller is a friendly little neighbor girl with pigtails, whom we see as a grown-up balloon farmer on the book's last page. She's pictured staying up late to learn the secret of Harvey's magic planting process. Nolen's "true truth" style contrasts delightfully with the pictures of Harvey's crop, with balloons in all shapes and colors. The dry narrative humor may not reach all children, but the illustrations won't be forgotten. Hidden somewhere in each one, by the way, is a rabbit, a tyrannosaur, a cat, a chicken, a cow, and a pig.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780688078881
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
04/29/1994
Edition description:
1st ed
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.87(w) x 11.35(h) x 0.40(d)
Lexile:
AD710L (what's this?)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

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