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If I'd Known Then What I Know Now

If I'd Known Then What I Know Now

5.0 1
by Reeve Lindbergh, Kimberly Bulcken Root (Illustrator)

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A father's love for his family is expressed through his well-meaning but unsuccessful attempts to fix up their house.


A father's love for his family is expressed through his well-meaning but unsuccessful attempts to fix up their house.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Just in time for Father's Day comes this paean to the home repair-challenged, part counting book (the young narrator recounts each year in his life in terms of a series of disastrous domestic projects tackled by his dad), part rollicking read-aloud (``We papered the windows, we papered the door, / We papered the bed right onto the floor''). Lindbergh ( What Is the Sun? reviewed below; Benjamin's Barn ) and Root ( Papa's Bedtime Story ) roll out one comically calamitous scenario after another. This is the house that Dad built: leaky roof, convoluted plumbing, faulty wiring (it lights up the cat) and a chimney that careens off into the stratosphere at an impossible angle. Interrupting the child's recital is the inept handyman's plaintive refrain, ``If I'd known then what I know now.'' Lindbergh's verse text is eminently readable, and Root makes hay with it, producing a collection of wonderfully exaggerated, sophisticated illustrations. Although Dad clearly has more enthusiasm than skill, the family rallies round in the end to reassure him that they still wouldn't want any other father ``if we'd known then what we know now!'' Ages 3-8. (May)
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 3-A man's inexperienced attempts to build, furnish, and manage a farm lead to all kinds of disasters: a roof peppered with holes, plumbing that goes askew, wiring that nearly electrocutes the cat, a baby's cradle that only rocks to one side, etc. In the end, the neighbors and animals join the family in letting the man know that he is appreciated, despite his ineptitude. This far-fetched story, told in rhyme, is illustrated with lively, detailed, pen-and-watercolor paintings that carry out the absurdity. The book's broad, tall-tale humor and attractive art will appeal to all those ``just learning how'' ...to read, to write, to experiment.- Sally R. Dow, Ossining Public Library, NY

Product Details

Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
7.16(w) x 8.84(h) x 0.20(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

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If I'd Known Then What I Know Now 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love this book so much. I do recommend it to all. One of the best illustrations on how much a child(ren) loves their parent. Kudos to Reeve Lindbergh.--ko