Pierre in Love

Overview


A charming story about finding the courage to tell someone special how you feel about them.

Poor Pierre wishes he could tell Catherine how he feels about her, but Catherine is a graceful ballet teacher, and Pierre is merely a poor fisherman.

By making a few silly mistakes and a few more brave decisions, Pierre soon learns that being a fisherman may not make him so hard to love after all.

Pennypacker weaves a ...

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Overview


A charming story about finding the courage to tell someone special how you feel about them.

Poor Pierre wishes he could tell Catherine how he feels about her, but Catherine is a graceful ballet teacher, and Pierre is merely a poor fisherman.

By making a few silly mistakes and a few more brave decisions, Pierre soon learns that being a fisherman may not make him so hard to love after all.

Pennypacker weaves a sweet story about finding the courage to let someone special into your heart, while Mathers' luscious illustrations draw readers into a colorful world full of hope and bravery.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Booklist Starred
Pennypacker, Sara. Pierre in Love. Illus. by Petra Mathers. Jan. 2007. 40p. Scholastic/Orchard, $16.99 (0-439-51740-0). PreS–Gr. 2
A simple fisherman, Pierre the mouse is in love with Catherine the rabbit, a ballet teacher. But how can he hope to win one so fair? Then Pierre finds something that matches Catherine's beauty––a shell. He decides to dress to the nines, give her the shell, and tell her how he feels. But when the moment comes, he flees, leaving the shell behind. That sets off a string of anonymous nightly gift giving, until Catherine can bear the mystery no longer. She waits up and catches Pierre, who confesses his love. Alas, Catherine loves another, but in a happily-ever-after ending, she realizes that Pierre, so smartly dressed, is, in fact, the fisherman she has admired from afar. Subtleties abound, and the emotions may affect adults more than children. But the purity of the love will touch children, too, and both the words and the art are delightful. Sometimes the phrases are elegant: Catherine's voice floated like “silver ribbon over the harbor.” Sometimes they capture the goofiness love engenders: “He felt all bloopy and love-swoggled.” The watercolors have a deceptive, childlike simplicity that draws in reader, with color, detail, and a warm expression of feelings. ––Ilene Cooper

Kirkus
Rodent Pierre–a wistful fisherman–is secretly in love with rabbit Catherine, an artistic ballet teacher whose studio he passes each morning. For her part, the humble Catherine has fallen for a mysterious stranger who returns to the harbor each night in his boat. How these star-crossed lovers hook up is told through a combination of a simple, direct text splashed with humor and imaginative watercolor paintings that are accomplished and varied in their composition. The pictures are particularly buoyant, with precise renderings of the whiskered Pierre and his working vessel set against luminous sky-and-seascapes in choice colors. Mathers is also skilled at showing Pierre's secret longing with misty images of the hare dancing across the waves and through the clouds. An endearingly elegant pick for Valentine's Day, featuring well-matched art and text. (Picture book. 5-8).

PW
In this très romantique tale, whose misty coastal setting suggests Maine or Nova Scotia, fisherman-rat Pierre longs to express his hidden feelings to Catherine, a slim gray rabbit. Pierre sees her painting pictures and teaching ballet in her studio as he pilots his boat to and from their seaside village. "Pierre sighed tragically.... Catherine was exquisite, an angel of grace and beauty, and he was only an ordinary fisherman." Each night, Pierre exchanges his orange slicker and jeans for a red shirt and white trousers: "He did not look a bit like the fisherman he had been just an hour ago!" He steals to Catherine's house to declare his love, but always loses his nerve and leaves her a token of affection (a perfect pink shell, a wreath of seagrass). In Shakespearean fashion, Catherine discovers her spiffy admirer but (at first) fails to recognize him as the rugged fisherman of her dreams. With warmth and humor, Pennypacker (Clementine) charts an excessive crush: "Sunrises, sunsets, empty potato chip bags" remind Pierre of his beloved. Mathers (Lottie's New Beach Towel) paints in a naïve style that captures the ordinariness of the two who share a grand passion. Her foggy palette of teal, moss and charcoal suits the fishing village, especially in a quaint, wordless spread of Pierre docking his boat and Catherine painting at her window. This book's ideal audience is likely to be Pierre's age. Yet Pennypacker and Mathers compose a sweet but not treacly Valentine. Ages 4-8. (Jan.)

Publishers Weekly
In this trEs romantique tale, whose misty coastal setting suggests Maine or Nova Scotia, fisherman-rat Pierre longs to express his hidden feelings to Catherine, a slim gray rabbit. Pierre sees her painting pictures and teaching ballet in her studio as he pilots his boat to and from their seaside village. "Pierre sighed tragically.... Catherine was exquisite, an angel of grace and beauty, and he was only an ordinary fisherman." Each night, Pierre exchanges his orange slicker and jeans for a red shirt and white trousers: "He did not look a bit like the fisherman he had been just an hour ago!" He steals to Catherine's house to declare his love, but always loses his nerve and leaves her a token of affection (a perfect pink shell, a wreath of seagrass). In Shakespearean fashion, Catherine discovers her spiffy admirer but (at first) fails to recognize him as the rugged fisherman of her dreams. With warmth and humor, Pennypacker (Clementine) charts an excessive crush: "Sunrises, sunsets, empty potato chip bags" remind Pierre of his beloved. Mathers (Lottie's New Beach Towel) paints in a naOve style that captures the ordinariness of the two who share a grand passion. Her foggy palette of teal, moss and charcoal suits the fishing village, especially in a quaint, wordless spread of Pierre docking his boat and Catherine painting at her window. This book's ideal audience is likely to be Pierre's age. Yet Pennypacker and Mathers compose a sweet but not treacly Valentine. Ages 4-8. (Jan.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature - Phyllis Kennemer
Pierre exhibits all of the signs of being in love. He stares into space; he has lost his appetite; and everything he comes in contact with seems to him to scream "Catherine." Alas, Pierre is a lowly fisherman and Catherine, a beautiful ballet teacher, does not know he exists. Finally, Pierre decides to make his love known. One evening he ties a ribbon around a perfect shell, puts on his dashing red shirt, and approaches Catherine's studio. Then he loses his nerve, sets the shell on the doorstep and flees. Pierre continues to daydream about Catherine and he leaves more gifts for her, including a bouquet of wild roses, a piece of driftwood, a heart-shaped wreath of sea grass, and a dozen oysters on ice. Catherine is intrigued with all these lovely offerings and she becomes very curious about this mysterious suitor. One night she hides behind a lilac bush and catches Pierre in the act. Stunned at the discovery, Pierre blurts out his love. Catherine tells him she is in love with someone else. Of course, it turns out that she is actually in love with Pierre—not suspecting his real identity. Once their secrets are revealed, however, they fly into each others arms and their hearts become one. A beautiful seaside setting appears in the full-page pastel paintings that face each page of text. Pierre is depicted as a rat and Catherine is a rabbit, but Pierre is larger than she is. They dress and act like humans. The intended audience for this book is not clear. This story of true love seems to be more appropriate for an older audience than the picture book format would indicate.
School Library Journal

K-Gr 2
Pierre, a mouse who sails a fishing boat, is in love with Catherine, a ballet-teaching rabbit he glimpses from afar. She admires the dashing figure she sees from her window in the evening. Yet each is afraid to speak to the other. Eventually, they reveal themselves and learn that "feelings are like tides—you can't hold them back." While the notion of the torments of adult romantic love may go over the heads of the intended audience, children will relate to the themes of honesty and being true to oneself. For that reason, the story would make a good Valentine's Day read-aloud, although the French ballet terms may require further explanation. Mathers's watercolors of the fishing village, in a palette of moody grays, blues, and purples, add a calming and whimsical touch.
—Rachael VilmarCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Kirkus Reviews
Rodent Pierre-a wistful fisherman-is secretly in love with rabbit Catherine, an artistic ballet teacher whose studio he passes each morning. For her part, the humble Catherine has fallen for a mysterious stranger who returns to the harbor each night in his boat. How these star-crossed lovers hook up is told through a combination of a simple, direct text splashed with humor and imaginative watercolor paintings that are accomplished and varied in their composition. The pictures are particularly buoyant, with precise renderings of the whiskered Pierre and his working vessel set against luminous sky-and-seascapes in choice colors. Mathers is also skilled at showing Pierre's secret longing with misty images of the hare dancing across the waves and through the clouds. An endearingly elegant pick for Valentine's Day, featuring well-matched art and text. (Picture book. 5-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780439517409
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/1/2007
  • Pages: 40
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: 730L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 8.10 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Sara Pennypacker

Sara Pennypacker is a bestselling author whose title include the Clementine series: CLEMENTINE, THE TALENTED CLEMENTINE, and CLEMENTINE's LETTER, the Stuart series: STUART'S CAPE and STUART GOES TO SCHOOL, and the picture books PIERRE IN LOVE, and SPARROW GIRL. Sara lives on Cape Cod, in Massachusetts.

Petra Mathers was born in 1945 in Todtmoos, Germany and immigrated to the United States as a young woman. She has written and illustrated many books for children. The four-time winner of the annual New York Times prize for Best Illustrated Children's Book won the Ezra Jack Keats Medal for her first book Maria Theresa.

Before moving to the US, Mathers worked in a bookstore in Germany. Her first American career was a painter although she also worked as a waitress to "make ends meet."
Mathers has reported that she loves chickens, and her "Lottie's World" series, feature Lottie, a chicken, and her best friend, Herbie, a duck. Her latest book, Pierre in Love, written by Sara Pennypacker will be published in January 2007.

Mathers lives with her husband, Michael, beside the mighty Columbia River in Oregon.

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