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One Grain of Sand: A Lullaby

One Grain of Sand: A Lullaby

by Pete Seeger, Linda Wingerter (Illustrator)

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
"Some of the most successful singing I've ever done has been when one hundred percent of my audience has gone sound to sleep on me," music legend Seeger (Turn! Turn! Turn!, reviewed above) wryly notes in the preface. But even if the lullaby's lyrics, which serve as the book's text, prove ultimately soporific (the melody line also appears in the preface), many young readers will try their best to stay up until the last page, so they can savor every one of Wingerter's gorgeous acrylic paintings. Working mostly in soothing hues of twilight blue, she riffs on the lullaby's subtext of connectedness ("One grain of sand,/ One grain of sand in all the world,/ One grain of sand,/ One little boy, one little girl"). An especially lush spread, inspired by "one drop of water in the sea," depicts the ocean depths, with swirling aqua and midnight-blue hues engulfing the silhouette of a whale. Like the chauffeur of a magic carpet, the artist whisks readers around the world, hovering above and around exotic locales. The book opens and closes on a vast tropical beach, the home of a solitary fishing family; in between, readers visit a lagoon where an Asian girl gathers a phosphorescent water lily; a metropolis where a boy in his room and a cat on the roof admire the skyscrapers' sparkling lights; and an ice floe where a polar bear and her cub huddle for safety. The message is soothing and inspiring: the world is a great, gorgeous collective of individuals whose lives are touched by wonder every day. Ages 3-6. (Aug.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Both the fragile earth and the little child are connected in a world where even one grain of sand is important. Illustrations add to this sing-along ecology lesson. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Folksinger Seeger's gentle lullaby, made up for his youngest daughter nearly 50 years ago, is brought to life in a different way by Wingerter's rich and warm acrylics. Seeger offers a brief introduction and a few bars of music, while encouraging "readers and singers" to expand on the words or the tune. "One grain of sand in all the world. . . . One little boy, one little girl," it begins, and Wingerter takes the entire world as her canvas. Misty blue hills with a boy and his donkey, a blonde girl with a Scandinavian stave church in the background, a small sailing ship on an emerald/turquoise sea near a lighthouse, all expand and reflect the simple lyrics, as in "One grain of sand, / One drop of water in the sea, / . . . One little you, one little me." Human and animal parents in emotionally resonant settings (peering out of nighttime windows, tucking children into bed, a gallop of horses young and old racing in the rain) illuminate the simple lyrics beautifully, making a lovely bedtime read-aloud whether sung or spoken. (Picture book. 3-6)

Product Details

Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication date:
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
10.50(w) x 10.37(h) x 0.37(d)
Age Range:
3 - 6 Years

Meet the Author

Pete Seeger, a Grammy Award winner as well as the recipient of the N.E.A. National Medal of Arts and Kennedy Center Honors, has spent sixty years singing in peace rallies, civil rights marches, schools, and camps. He is also the author of the bestselling Abiyoyo picture books.

Linda Wingerter is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design. Her award-winning work has been exhibited in several galleries, and appeared in numerous publications.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
May 3, 1919
Date of Death:
January 27, 2014
Place of Birth:
Patterson, NY
Place of Death:
New York City, NY

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