The Stranger

( 13 )

Overview

The enigmatic origins of the stranger that Farmer Bailey hits with his truck and brings home to recuperate seem to have a mysterious relation to the weather. Could he be Jack Frost?

The enigmatic origins of the stranger Farmer Bailey hits with his truck and brings home to recuperate seem to have a mysterious relation to the changing season.

Read More Show Less
... See more details below
Hardcover (Library Binding - None)
$17.05
BN.com price
(Save 10%)$18.95 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (47) from $1.99   
  • New (14) from $10.00   
  • Used (33) from $1.99   
Note: Kids' Club Eligible. See More Details.
Sending request ...

Overview

The enigmatic origins of the stranger that Farmer Bailey hits with his truck and brings home to recuperate seem to have a mysterious relation to the weather. Could he be Jack Frost?

The enigmatic origins of the stranger Farmer Bailey hits with his truck and brings home to recuperate seem to have a mysterious relation to the changing season.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The author-illustrator has woven a thread of fantasy in and around his realistic illustrations to give the reader, once again, a story that stays in the imagination." Horn Book

"The author-illustrator has woven a thread of fantasy in and around his realistic illustrations to give the reader, once again, a story that stays in the imagination." Horn Book Guide

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Farmer Bailey thinks he's hit a deer while driving his truck, but in the middle of the road lies a man, an enigmatic stranger. He goes home with Farmer Bailey, his memory apparently gone. Weeks pass at the Bailey farm; the stranger seems happy to be around them, and helps with the harvest. Oddly, while trees to the north of the farm turn red and gold with the arrival of fall, Bailey's land seems to be in a state of perpetual summer. One day, the stranger sees geese flying south and knows that he, too, must leave. Not long after that, the leaves at the farm change color and the air turns cool. And every year since, summer lasts a week longer at the Bailey farm than anywhere else. Van Allsburg's story is strangely melancholy, and his straightforward writng is uncannily dry, in contrast to the vivid green and golden landscapes of his paintings. The mood and suspense in this book make it compellinga chance to see the artist take a slight incident and create a truly mysterious event. (All ages
Children's Literature - Phyllis Kennemer
This reissue of Van Allsburg's tale of the origins of Indian summer will continue to both charm and mystify young readers. Summer is just turning to fall when Farmer Bailey hits a man crossing the road in front of his truck. The man is dressed in strange leather clothing and appears to be a wandering hermit. He suffers from amnesia, however, so the Baileys have no explanation for the man's unusual behavior and the cold drafts they feel in his presence. The stranger stays on as a guest, helping with farm chores and joining in family activities. Then one day, he picks up a green leaf. As he breathes on it, the leaf turns to gold. Suddenly, the stranger's memory returns. He quickly dons his old leather clothes, hugs the family good-bye, and vanishes. The Bailey's feel a cool breeze and notice the trees changing colors. Each page of the text has a facing picture in full color. Van Allsburg's signature illustrations illuminate the surreal feeling of the story. Suggested activities for using this book with students can be found on Van Allsburg's web site: http://www.chrisvanallsburg.com.
School Library Journal
Gr 2-4The Stranger is a down-homey modern myth about the phenomenon of Indian Summer, but the opening owes less to the folktale than to The Twilight Zone. Farmer Bailey, rapt on an end-of-summer day in his 1940s pickup, suddenly hits something: the next page shows a young man's body, dramatically foreshortened and stretched out at eye-level in the evening shadows. The terror-stricken victim quickly recovers but has lost both speech and memory. Invited to stay with the farmer, his wife, and little girl, he spends idyllic days with them while autumn's advance is unaccountably delayed. The text scatters clues to the stranger's identity (Jack Frost); but the moment of recognition is cleverly given over to the electrifying illustration alone. Characteristically, the bold simplifications of Van Allsburg's warm pastels look back to American regionalist paintings of the 1930s and '40sespecially to Thomas Hart Benton and Grant Wood. The story is too low-keyed for most children, although several compositions provide suspense with their unorthodox points-of-view, out-of-frame action, and play with effects of light. Here the interweaving of fantasy and reality is more complex than in Van Allsburg's earlier books, and the effects more subtle; but the surface pleasures of color and form are still enticing. Patricia Dooley, formerly at Drexel University, Phila .
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780395423318
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 10/28/1986
  • Format: Library Binding
  • Edition description: None
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 81,213
  • Age range: 7 - 9 Years
  • Lexile: 640L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 9.20 (w) x 10.86 (h) x 0.36 (d)

Meet the Author

Chris Van Allsburg is the winner of two Caldecott Medals, for Jumanji and The Polar Express, as well as the recipient of a Caldecott Honor Book for The Garden of Abdul Gasazi. The author and illustrator of numerous picture books for children, he has also been awarded the Regina Medal for lifetime achievement in children’s literature. In 1982, Jumanji was nominated for a National Book Award and in 1996, it was made into a popular feature film. Chris Van Allsburg was formerly an instructor at the Rhode Island School of Design. He lives in Rhode Island with his wife and two children.

Biography

Multiple Caldecott Medal winner Chris Van Allsburg grew up in the 1950s in and around Grand Rapids, Michigan. He majored in sculpture at the University of Michigan's College of Architecture & Design and graduated in 1972. He received his M.F.A. in 1975 from Rhode Island School of Design.

After graduate school, Van Allsburgh set up a sculpture studio in Providence, married and settled in the area, and began exhibiting his work in New York City and throughout New England. Around the same time, he became interested in drawing. His wife, Lisa, encouraged him to pursue children's book illustration, putting him in contact with her friend David Macauley, a successful artist and author. Macauley's editor at Houghton Mifflin was impressed by Van Allsburgh's work and advised him to try his hand at illustrating a story of his own. His maiden effort, The Garden of Abdul Gasazi, was published in 1979 and received a Caldecott Honor Medal.

Since that auspicious beginning, Van Allsburgh has gone on to produce a string of wonderfully inventive, critically acclaimed, and award-winning books. He gathers inspiration from unlikely quarters -- the progress of ants across a kitchen counter, crayon streaks in a child's coloring book, a children's board game come to life -- and executes his ideas on a provocative but surefire "What if..." principle.

Among his many awards are two Caldecott Medals -- one for Jumanji, written in 1982 and the other for 1985's The Polar Express; a National Book Award (also for Jumanji); and the Regina Medal for lifetime achievement in children's literature.

Good To Know

Van Allsburg's grandfather owned and operated the East End Creamery and delivered milk and milk products to homes around the Grand Rapids area in yellow and blue trucks.

One of Van Allsburg's childhood homes was a big, Tudor-styled house on a wide, tree-lined street. He used the street as a model for the cover art of what is arguably his most famous book, The Polar Express.

Because so many students at Van Allsburg's high school excelled academically, representatives from the University of Michigan would visit each year to interview interested seniors and admit them on the spot if they met qualifications. During his senior year, Van Allsburg was told about the art program affiliated with the University's College of Architecture & Design and thought it sounded like fun. Although he had never had any formal art classes, he fibbed to the admissions officer, saying he had taken private lessons outside of school.

Two of Van Allsburg's bestselling books, Jumanji and The Polar Express, were subsequently turned into blockbuster movies.

Van Allsburg is not your typical "feel good" children's author. He has been known to handle darker themes, and his stories often involve bizarre worlds and dreamscapes.

In all his stories, Van Allsburg inserts a little white bull terrier modeled after a real-life dog owned by his brother-in-law. (Another popular children's author, David Shannon, does the same thing, but Shannon's pup is a Westie!)

Read More Show Less
    1. Hometown:
      Providence, Rhode Island
    1. Date of Birth:
      June 18, 1949
    2. Place of Birth:
      Grand Rapids, Michigan
    1. Education:
      University of Michigan College of Architecture & Design, 1972; Rhode Island School of Design, MFA, 1975
    2. Website:

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 13 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(6)

4 Star

(3)

3 Star

(3)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(1)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2008

    strange but magical

    The Stranger by Chris Van Allsburg is a great book. It starts out when Mr. Baily runs into a stranger with his truck. So Mr. Baily let him stay as long as he needed. They let him wear new clean clothes .They started working in the farm it was hot out there. The stranger did not sweat but Mr. Baily did sweat and take a break. The stranger danced with the Bailey family . He had so much fun. Hard to believe that he was a hermit. When he saw the green trees he thought they were ugly .He did not like green trees. One day the strangers feelings grew bigger the next day he couldn¿t stand a green trees leaf. He touched it and it turned red. To find out why you have to read the rest.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 3, 2008

    a reviewer

    The Stranger by Chris Van Allsburg is one of my favorite books. This story is about a stranger that gets hit by Mr. Bailey¿s car. He doesn¿t know who he is and he has no place to go. He lives with the Bailey¿s he works very hard. When he¿s in the sun he doesn¿t even sweat he works so hard and doesn¿t take breaks. When he came it was fall but around the Bailey¿s the trees were green in the distance it was not. It is fall and it¿s hot when it should be cool. If you like a book with good illustration and mystery books, you should read The Stranger. If you like a mystery, then this is the right book for you!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 3, 2007

    Confusing at first..but good book overall

    Although, the book is extremely fast paced in a sense of many different occurances arrising randomly, it all really comes together at the end after thinking for a moment. i didn't get it at first and thought it was horribe but after going back and re- reading some chapters it all makes sense. It is a tragic story of a man named Meursault who has no hope in life and how lives.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 25, 2005

    Strange but O.K.

    When I was in fourth grade I read this book. It's a little strange I have to say but I like this book alot!I if you like strange things then you should read it its only 32 pages.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 12, 2004

    Strange 'Stranger'

    I didn't quite catch anything at all, it doesn't give you very many details about the stranger after living with him so long, but i like the illustraitions, though. Bad book! The only CVA book that's bad! Read the other ones as you like but not THIS ONE AT ALL!!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 13, 2003

    Awesome story...

    I loved this story when I was in grade school, and it's still a favorite...

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2000

    I think The Stranger should be 5 stars because is a great book!!!!!!!

    What a great book The Stranger is!! Chris Van Allsburg is GREAT at making stories, I liked this one the best!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 18, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 5, 2008

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted July 5, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 22, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted March 13, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 5, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 13 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)