How Do You Raise a Raisin?


People have been gobbling up yummy, nutritious raisins for centuries. Ancient Greeks and Romans awarded them at sporting events and astronauts have taken raisins into space. Find out how grapes become raisins, who introduced the seedless grape, and the many uses for raisins.

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People have been gobbling up yummy, nutritious raisins for centuries. Ancient Greeks and Romans awarded them at sporting events and astronauts have taken raisins into space. Find out how grapes become raisins, who introduced the seedless grape, and the many uses for raisins.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
From vine planting and picking to drying and devouring, Ryan's raisin story combines the use of rhyme and reason. Each two-page spread features playful poems posing questions, plus plain-text factual answers. For example-Q: "Do raisins grow on Earth, or other planets, far away?/Do aliens collect them and space-shuttle them our way?" A: "Raisins...are countries like Turkey, Iran, Greece, Australia, and the United States." Simple but bold artwork depicts scenes of the backbreaking manual labor of harvesting along with fanciful raisin portraits-like raisins drying on beach blankets in the sun. The last of the 32 pages present additional raisin facts. One page cites raisin virtues, like their nutrition value. Eight pages of raisin history transport you from the Phoenicians to Hannibal's army to California's Thompson (who transformed the raisin industry forever when he developed seedless grapes in the late 1800s). Ants on a Log, Rats on a Raft, and Super Balls are found on the final recipe page. As is usual with Charlesbridge books, this one has quality built into the thick pages and focused graphics. If your younger readers need a book to illustrate natural foods or where fruits come from, this is a good choice. 2003, Charlesbridge, Ages 6 to 9.
— Chris Gill
School Library Journal
Gr 2-4-For the raisin-obsessed child, if there is such a creature, this book would be the ideal choice. Without that devouring passion, this title reads a bit like an advertising venture of the California Raisin Advisory Board (which leads the list in the author's thank-yous that include the Sun-Maid Growers of California). The book includes raisin history, agriculture, trivia, and even a few recipes. Brown's heavily stippled, marker-and-pastel illustrations are fanciful and sprightly. However, the rhymes are of dubious merit ("Do raisins grow in one place,/like Raisin Creek or Raisin Hill?/Is there a special town called/Raisinfield or Raisinville?") and alternate with a long, talky text that gives facts. Ryan stumbles with this title. It may be the ideal book for an assignment; otherwise, it's likely to languish on the shelf.-Dona Ratterree, New York City Public Schools Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Offering quite a tasty ode to the perfect snack, Ryan raises queries in a little rhymed ditty and then answers in prose. Readers learn, for instance, that 90 percent of raisins sold in the US come from around Fresno, California, and that 95 percent of that crop is the Thompson Seedless grape, named for the man who introduced the Lady de Coverly green seedless grape to California. Facts include how raisins are grown, cut, dried, and processed, some history (the ancient Phoenicians produced muscat raisins from muscat grapes; tiny seedless grapes grown near Corinth, Greece, called raisin de Corauntz, became currants), and even a recipe or three. Brown's marker-and-pastel pictures are boldly drawn with the same whimsical approach as the verse-drying raisins lie on beach blankets in the sun, and tiny fairy princesses stuff raisin boxes full. One can have one's chocolate or popcorn; youngsters devoted to those cute little boxes of sweet dried treats will revel in learning all about them. (Picture book/nonfiction. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781570913983
  • Publisher: Charlesbridge Publishing, Inc.
  • Publication date: 7/28/2003
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 783,011
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.63 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.15 (d)

Meet the Author

Pam Muñoz Ryan is a native of California. She received her bachelor's and master's degrees at San Diego State University and she worked as a bilingual teacher and an early childhood administrator before dedicating herself full-time to writing. She wrote her first book at the age of 32 at the encouragement of a friend. She has written many picture books for young children and novels for older students. Pam lives in California with her husband and four children. She often speaks at schools and conferences about writing and literacy.

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