Homer

Homer

by Elisha Cooper
     
 

Home isn't just where the heart is.

Home is often where the dog is.

And for this loyal dog—who you will recognize if you have ever loved a dog—home is where you are.

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Overview

Home isn't just where the heart is.

Home is often where the dog is.

And for this loyal dog—who you will recognize if you have ever loved a dog—home is where you are.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
With minimal text and evocative panoramas of a beach house that exude serenity and quiet pleasures, Cooper (Beaver Is Lost) focuses attention on the loving relationship between a family and their loyal dog. One by one, family members ask Homer to join them, but the dog is happy to watch from the porch. Three younger dogs invite him to “Chase and race around the yard?” and Homer answers, “No, thanks.” The smallest child suggests exploring the field with her. “Thank you, but no.” As each family member returns to the house, they share their discoveries with Homer (flowers, a shell, fresh vegetables from the market). Finally, the father asks, “Do you need anything?” and Homer answers, “No, I have everything I want.” He goes inside, eats his food, climbs into a blue chair, and adds, “I have you.” Dog lovers will adore this quiet portrayal of companionship on an idyllic summer day. Moreover, Homer’s attitude speaks volumes to readers of all ages who find contentment and peace in close-knit relationships, without needing to be at the center of the action. Ages 3�8. (June)
Booklist (starred review)
“Wonderful. . . . This subtle picture book beautifully captures the rhythms of a family, with a dog nestled at its heart.”
Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“Kids living with their own adored older dogs will appreciate the doggy perspective, expressed with simple sweetness.”
Booklist
"Wonderful. . . . This subtle picture book beautifully captures the rhythms of a family, with a dog nestled at its heart."
Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books
"Kids living with their own adored older dogs will appreciate the doggy perspective, expressed with simple sweetness."
The Bulletin for the Center for Children's Books
“Kids living with their own adored older dogs will appreciate the doggy perspective, expressed with simple sweetness.”
Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
“Kids living with their own adored older dogs will appreciate the doggy perspective, expressed with simple sweetness.”
Children's Literature - Susan Borges
As a children's book or a gift for adult dog-lovers, this wonderful picture book will be loved by all! Never again will the name Homer be mentioned without warm tender feelings of this gentle yellow lab, Homer, who is the quintessential "best dog" and beloved family pet. With very few words and simple, warm illustrations, readers will be taken into Homer's heart and soul as he spends his last summer on the porch of his family's summer cottage. As active family members happily come and go, Homer peacefully and calmly accepts an occasional pat or hug and lovingly wags his tail. The soft watercolor illustrations are beautiful and they create a mood of wonderful contentment and quiet joy. Similarly, the sparse prose captures the essence of these peaceful days of old Homer, as he graciously accepts this final phase of his life and enjoys a state of quiet contentment and calm. Words and illustrations come together beautifully in this heart-warming story a beloved family pet, allowing readers to see and feel the love between Homer and his family, as Homer graciously faces his own twilight. Reviewer: Susan Borges
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—As in Farm (Scholastic, 2010) and Dance! (HarperCollins, 2001), Cooper takes an uncommon approach to a traditional topic. Here, he replaces the exuberant or troublemaking dog of literary convention with a stolid, aging yellow lab contentedly watching the action occur around him. Emerging one by one from a seaside home, Homer's family invites him along to explore the beach, the market, the field. He gently declines each offer, remaining comfortably on the porch. As, one by one, the family returns with gifts from their wanderings, Homer warmly receives their treasures and enthusiastic accounts. Cooper's loose and exquisite pencil-lined watercolors beautifully portray both the vastness of the nearby ocean and cloud-studded sky-look for one lovely full-spread illustration encompassing the whole family adventuring individually that practically radiates with beachy idyll-and the nuance of Homer's realistically expressive face. After everyone's safe return, the father asks Homer if he needs anything. "No," Homer replies, absorbing the sunset before stretching, entering the house for dinner, and settling into his favorite chair in a wonderful six-paneled spread, "I have you." With short sentences, large font, and the familiar topic, the book seems targeted to a preschool audience, but the autumnal serenity may elude some younger children. However, the appealing illustrations, simple text, and loving but unsaccharine tone will capture many children, especially those with a veteran pet waiting patiently at home.—Robbin E. Friedman, Chappaqua Library, NY
Kirkus Reviews
Stories of patiently waiting dogs have been around for just about forever, or at least since Homer wrote about faithful Argos recognizing Odysseus after a 20-year absence. In Cooper's touching story, the patient pup is an aging yellow Lab named Homer, whose love for his family is as deep and wide as the ocean outside their cottage. At daybreak Homer is already lying on the front porch, looking out over a field and beach, as well as the sea beyond. As the family members (including three more dogs) pass by Homer on their way out, they all invite him to come along to play in the water, dig in the sand or bike to the store. Homer replies to each in turn that he is happy to stay right there on the porch, watching and waiting. His family returns, and the pleasant day winds down, with Homer finally curling up in a cozy armchair for the night, content because "I have everything I want." Soft-focus watercolor illustrations effectively convey the seaside atmosphere with a combination of formats, including some pages with consecutive panels and wordless double-page spreads showing a wide view of the cottage and beach and the inside of the home with the family getting ready for bed. Soothing and satisfying; perfect for reading on the porch on a summer evening, preferably next to a dog. (Picture book. 3-7)
The Washington Post
Elisha Cooper, who always seems to favor long, low, calming layouts, uses this design again to great advantage: The flat line of the far-off horizon where sky and sea meet, the inviting sweep of golden sand in almost every scene, and the level porch railing all echo Homer's supine spine. It's not melancholy or age that tethers Homer to his home, it's contentment.
—Kristi Jemtegaard

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780062012487
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
05/29/2012
Pages:
32
Sales rank:
715,741
Product dimensions:
10.60(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

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