If You're Not from the Prairie...

( 2 )


A boy provides a look at life on the prairies of North America and describes the effects of the climate on the people in the heartland of the continent.

With accessible verse and stunning artwork, here is a book in the tradition of Norman Rockwell that captures the particularly American experience of life on the prairie. Full color.

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A boy provides a look at life on the prairies of North America and describes the effects of the climate on the people in the heartland of the continent.

With accessible verse and stunning artwork, here is a book in the tradition of Norman Rockwell that captures the particularly American experience of life on the prairie. Full color.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Susan Hepler
Addressing the reader in free verse questions which frame a rhymed stanza, an insider lists the ways that a stranger can't possibly know what he knows about the prairie: endless wind, sun, sky messages, grass that you can hear, and stunning cold. A young boy is pictured in realistic, detailed prairie settings in various seasons playing, biking, hanging around with friends, or walking down a streambed. Abruptly, the voice switches to a middle-aged man who may be the boy grown older, and italicized print reaches out to mend the narrator's rift with the reader-you can't know me unless some part of you has known this same blazing sun. These two Canadians obviously love Saskatchewan and know their prairies first-hand. Midwesterners will identify with the boy's interpretation of the land's harsh beauty while others may begin to understand how beautiful it can be. Ripplinger's acrylic paintings are gloriously evocative and would give children studying the Dust Bowl years or books such as Patricia MacLachlan's Sarah Plain and Tall a powerful feeling for the setting. 1998 (orig.
School Library Journal
Gr 2-6-Blazing skies in bright blues bounce from the full-page acrylic illustrations that face every page of poetic text in this piece about modern-day life on the prairie. Ripplinger's paintings are done in a realistic style somewhat similar to Andrew Wyeth's. In them, a young boy and his dog play through every season on farmlands, prairie fields, and country roads. He and his friends have a snowball fight in front of a large country house and board the school bus in a winter blizzard. The child walks in a creek bed in solitude and down the road beside his dad. For the most part, the accompanying verse is well written. The dialogue style works well rhythmically and makes for a possible story hour or program read-aloud. Adults would also enjoy this nostalgic piece that ends with the boy a grown farmer: ``You see, my hair's mostly wind,/My eyes filled with grit,/My skin's red or brown,/My lips chapped and split.'' With its attractive format, this will make a nice additional purchase for poetry collections, though in prairie areas it might be a ``must.''-Susannah Price, Boise Public Library, ID
Mary Harris Veeder
nger for reading aloud. The initial premise of the poem--if you're not from the prairie, you can't understand wind, cold, grasses", and such--mellows out by the end as "you" and "I" agree to understand each other because we share the same sun. The colorful acrylic paintings, however, draw you in immediately rather than insist that you can't understand. Ripplinger's images catch the vastness of prairie living, with a strong sense of the flat expanses of the horizon, and the vastness of the sky. This is a world of children on the prairie, physically lying on the land, playing in the mud, walking through the snow. The book affectionately shows farm life on flatland, wherever the land is.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781895714661
  • Publisher: Raincoast Book Distribution
  • Publication date: 5/28/2002
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 788,489
  • Age range: 6 years
  • Product dimensions: 10.10 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 8, 2002

    Beautiful Book

    This book is one of our family favorites! My four little ones (6 and under) love this book as do my husband and I. We have also bought copies for the grandparents who love it as well! This book has a nostalgic feel to it....even if your not from the prairie! The story flows like silk to the soul, and the pictures are breath takingly beautiful! When we first bought this book we lived in a West Coast city... and loved the book. We now live in an area very simular to the one in the book, and now we can relate to the book. This book will be treasured in the memories of our home! I thank the author and illustrator for blessing our bookshelf with this poetic piece of art.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 15, 2010

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