Infinity and Me

( 2 )

Overview

When I looked up, I shivered. How many stars were in the sky? A million? A billion? Maybe the number was as big as infinity. I started to feel very, very small. How could I even think about something as big as infinity?

Uma can't help feeling small when she peers up at the night sky. She begins to wonder about infinity. Is infinity a number that grows forever? Is it an endless racetrack? Could infinity be in an ice cream cone? Uma soon finds ...

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Overview

When I looked up, I shivered. How many stars were in the sky? A million? A billion? Maybe the number was as big as infinity. I started to feel very, very small. How could I even think about something as big as infinity?

Uma can't help feeling small when she peers up at the night sky. She begins to wonder about infinity. Is infinity a number that grows forever? Is it an endless racetrack? Could infinity be in an ice cream cone? Uma soon finds that the ways to think about this big idea may just be…infinite.

A New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Book of 2012

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Dark-haired Uma sits wide-eyed in her backyard under a black, star-studded sky, torn between the charm of her new red shoes and the overwhelming size of the universe. “How many stars were in the sky? A million? A billion? Maybe the number was as big as infinity.” Friends, teachers, and family give Uma new ways to think about infinity—as an endless succession of ancestors, or as a noodle cut in half and in half again (Swiatkowska draws Uma cutting a python-sized noodle with a knife, demonstrating that things can become infinitely small, too). She struggles with the sheer enormity of the idea: “Actually, my head was starting to hurt from all these thoughts.” It’s not until Uma’s grandmother notices her shoes that Uma can make infinity her own: “y love for her was as big as infinity.” Hosford’s (Big Bouffant) story is as much a look into the interior life of a sensitive girl as it is a meditation on a mathematical concept—a task for which Swiatkowska’s (This Baby) idiosyncratic portraits are perfectly suited. Ages 5–10. Agent: Tracey Adams, Adams Literary. Illustrator’s agent: Emily Van Beek, Folio Literary Management. (Oct.)
Children's Literature - Anne Pechnyo
How big is infinity? Uma is on a search to answer this mind-boggling question. Her search for answers begins when she looks up at the night sky and tries to imagine how many stars are in the universe. She begins to seek answers from the friends, family members, and school staff—asking how they imagine infinity. None of their definitions for this elusive term satisfy Uma, and she gets frustrated at the possibility that she will never know what infinity really is. It takes a loving comment from her doting Grandmother for Uma to internalize the meaning of "infinity." Swiatkowska, who has previously won the Ezra Jack Keats Illustrator Award for her illustrations in My Name is Yooni, pairs old-fashioned illustrations with Hosford's text, bringing the whimsy alive to readers. This book would serve as a valuable read aloud in classrooms discussing infinity and its different definitions in our world, including both the mathematical and the abstract. Reviewer: Anne Pechnyo
Kirkus Reviews
Uma's struggle with the meaning of infinity offers readers a playful, gorgeous introduction to the mathematical concept. When little Uma gazes at the vast night sky and wonders how many stars are there, she asks, "How could I even think about something as big as infinity?" When friends, her grandmother, the school cook and the music teacher offer creative ways of describing infinity, Uma ends up feeling rather overwhelmed. She then realizes that her pondering has made her forget about the new red shoes she'd been so excited about right before her stargazing musings began. Worse yet--no one had noticed her fancy new footwear that day! But after school, Grandma tells her "Uma, I meant to tell you this morning--those are the most beautiful shoes I have ever seen!" and in a joyous spread, Uma glories, "…my love for her was as big as infinity." Then Uma and her grandmother go outside to look at the sky, and "[s]nuggled up to Grandma, the sky didn't seem so huge and cold anymore. Now it was more like a sparkly blanket, covering us both." While Hosford's text deftly evokes the child's voice, Swiatkowska's expressive, lush illustrations steal the show, providing infinite opportunities for readers to examine each and every spread. A stellar artistic vision of the infinite power of intergenerational love. (author's note) (Picture book. 5-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780761367260
  • Publisher: Lerner Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 10/1/2012
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 198,126
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.40 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 3, 2013

    On a recent visit to my two grandchildren (a boy-5.5 yrs., girl-

    On a recent visit to my two grandchildren (a boy-5.5 yrs., girl-3.5 yrs.) was surprised to find them using the term "infinity"... in appropriate contexts, no less. Turns out they had been read this book. Kudos to the author and to the local library which had made it available. An excellent introduction to a mind-stretching concept. Good drawings and examples which speak to a young child's experience and invite him or her into the wonder of things bigger than big and beyond all endings. Highly recommend.  

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 20, 2012

    Great introduction to a difficult topic". Wonderful picture

    Great introduction to a difficult topic". Wonderful picture book about a complex subject. Lovely illustrations. Thoughtful conversations about what does infinity mean. Highly recommend this book.

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