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by Jessie Haas, Jos. A. Smith (Illustrator)
"Nothing's more important on this farm than hay," Gramp tells Nora. The hay is cut now and drying in the field. But the sky turns milky white. Then it's gray, and then it's grayer. Rain is coming and that could spoil the hay. Can Nora and Gramp and Gram get into the barn before the rain comes down? Here come sprinkles and then fat, wet drops...Hurry!

"2001 Notable


"Nothing's more important on this farm than hay," Gramp tells Nora. The hay is cut now and drying in the field. But the sky turns milky white. Then it's gray, and then it's grayer. Rain is coming and that could spoil the hay. Can Nora and Gramp and Gram get into the barn before the rain comes down? Here come sprinkles and then fat, wet drops...Hurry!

"2001 Notable Children's Trade Books in the Field of Social Studies (NCSS/CBC)"

Author Biography: Jessie Haas has written four books about Nora and her grandparents: Hurry!, Sugaring; No Foal Yet; and Mowing. She is the author of a popular series of young novels about Lily and her mare, Beware, which includes Beware and Stogie; Be Well, Beware; A Blue for Beware; and Beware the Mare. The author's titles for older readers include Unbroken; Fire! My Parents' Story; Westminster West; and Uncle Daney's Way. Ms. Haas is a graduate of Wellesley College, a political activist, and a lifelong Vermonter.In Her Own Words...

"I grew up on a small Vermont farm. My childhood was full of haying, gardening, horseback riding, and animals. I trained my own horse. I was given a goat for my sixteenth birthday. My mother was the town poundkeeper, so we had an endless stream of stray cats and dogs coming through. Lots of them stayed.

"Along with animals, there was reading. Everywhere. Even in the bathtub. I read all the horse stories ever written, as first choice, and then anything else printed on a page. At Wellesley, influenced by Jane Austen and all those horse stories, I wrote my first novel, Keeping Barney. My teacher, Helen Corsa, suggested I send the book to Susan Hirschman, a formerstudent of hers. Greenwillow rejected Keeping Barney with many useful suggestions. I took them, and the book was accepted a month before I graduated.

"That same month I married Michael Daley, and three years later we built a tiny cabin just uphill from my parents' cow pasture. We had one room at first, with no insulation, no phone, no plumbing, and no electricity-but a very small mortgage. The little house gave us-still gives us-the freedom to pursue our interests without having to get "real jobs." I've worked at a vegetable stand, a village store, and a yarn mill, all part-time, while concentrating mainly on my writing.

"I still live the same kind of life I did growing up. I ride a horse I trained myself. A cat sleeps on my desk as I work. I walk to my parents' farm every day, and I can pick out the exact spot in the pasture where my horse Josey gave me Beware the Mare.

"Writing is a lot like the other things I do. Sometimes it's like planting seeds, and rewriting is a lot like weeding! Then when a story is ripe, it's put in a book to preserve it. Other times, writing feels more like riding, a process of balance, rebalance, and profound concentration. A story can go sour, just like a horse. You have to push it, but not too hard, and keep it moving freely forward.

"I love the challenge of trying to put the truth down on paper. I want to make the words transparent, so that the page becomes an open window. I hope to pass along, through my stories, the joy and strength that others have given to me."

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Children's Literature
The hay has been cut and Nora and her grandparents are anxiously waiting for it to dry. The hay is needed to feed the animals during the winter. The sky is darkening and it looks like rain. Is the hay dry enough to harvest? Can they beat the storm? The tension mounts. Readers and listeners will give a sigh of relief when the hay is safely stored in the barn. It is all beautifully depicted in Smith's watercolors that clearly show the physical labor, integral role of the horses, and the approaching storm. 2000, Greenwillow, Ages 4 to 8, $15.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
School Library Journal
K-Gr 4-There was a time, not so long ago, when family farms were the rule rather than the exception. In those days, harvesting the hay was the centerpiece of the summer. As Gramp tells Nora in this story, "Nothing's more important on this farm than hay." The excitement and tension of that time is fully realized in poetic prose as the girl and her grandparents stop everything to bring in the crop: "Hurry! Hurry! whispers the breeze. It lifts the silver poplar leaves. Rain coming! Hurryuphurryuphurryup the haytedder clacks, as Nora drives it around the field." And yet, as anxious as they are to bring in the hay, it cannot be hurried: it must be dry before it can be brought into the barn. Readers cannot help but be pulled into the story, worrying about whether the rain will hold off long enough, then breathing a sigh of relief when the wagon stacked high with sweet-smelling hay is safely in the barn, leaving only a little on the field to spoil. Smith's accomplished and engagingly realistic watercolor and colored-pencil drawings beautifully capture that time. The approaching storm clouds are especially effective, conveying visually these frantic moments. This appealing title joins a distinguished trio of books about Nora and her grandfather: Mowing (1994), No Foal Yet (1995), and Sugaring (1996, all Greenwillow).-Lee Bock, Glenbrook Elementary School, Pulaski, WI Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.|
Kirkus Reviews
"Hurry! Hurry!" Rain is coming and Nora and her grandparents worry that the rain will come before the grass is dry and the hay can be gathered into the barn. In this fourth picture book about Nora, Gramp, and Gran, Haas (Unbroken, 1999, etc.) captures the urgency and worry as well as the joy of living close to the land. Nora drives the horse-drawn haytedder, around the field: "The forks of the tedder kick like dancing legs. They kick the grass high in the air and turn it over so the sun can dry the underside." When the sweet grass is dry, grandpa races to rake it, while Nora drives along the windrow and the hayloader swooshes up the hay and pours it in the wagon. Then it's the race to the barn when "the load of hay is as big as the moon." Safe inside the barn, with the mountain of hay, they wait out the summer storm. A satisfying, lyrical story of rural life, handsomely illustrated with watercolor paints, colored pencil, and watercolor pencils. (Picture book. 5-8)

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Edition description:
1 ED
Product dimensions:
10.32(w) x 8.32(h) x 0.31(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

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