Stringbean's Trip to the Shining Sea

( 1 )


Dear Reader,
Here are the postcards and snapshots that Stringbean Coe and his brother Fred sent home from the long trip they made one summer in Fred's truck.

Their grandfather made this album for the family—and for you. Enjoy yourselves!

Vera and Jennifer

Stringbean Coe, his big brother, Fred, and their dog, Potato, are driving from ...

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Dear Reader,
Here are the postcards and snapshots that Stringbean Coe and his brother Fred sent home from the long trip they made one summer in Fred's truck.

Their grandfather made this album for the family—and for you. Enjoy yourselves!

Vera and Jennifer

Stringbean Coe, his big brother, Fred, and their dog, Potato, are driving from Kansas to California in a pickup truck with a little house built on the back. Reading the postcards they send home every day is the next best thing to having a cross-country adventure all your own.

"A good-hearted celebration of life and experience, and a gift to the public."—School Library Journal

Stringbean describes his trip to the west coast in a series of postcards.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Stringbean Coe and his older brother Fred take a long trip from their home in Jeloway, Kans., to the Pacific Ocean, riding in Fred's ancient truck, which has a little house built on the back. And like most travelers, they take pictures and send postcards home to their parents. In an unusual scrapbook format, the Williamses integrate the Coes' memorabilia into a portrayal of their trip across the country. The first postcard, depicting Mr. Moe Junkologist of 100 Acres of Automotive Junk, includes the information that the boys didn't leave on time: they stopped to buy a hat and a spare tire. Next come photos Stringbean has taken and more postcards, all highlighting the trip: a visit to a mining town where their grandfather grew up, a circus packing up camp and, ultimately, the ocean. The choice of format, the illustrations full of winning details (the stamps alone invite closer inspection) and the convincingly childlike letters blend together and create an absorbing travelogue. All ages. (April)
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
In a series of amusing postcards, Cesar Joseph Coe, aka Stringbean, regales readers with his experiences on a trip from Kansas to the Pacific Ocean. In addition to the humor, there are lots of facts painlessly interspersed and a real story. Did you know that the Pacific Ocean occupies 63,801,668 square miles and is the largest ocean? Stringbean grows quite a bit that summer both in stature and maturity and decides his nickname is no longer appropriate. The comments from older brother, Fred, his traveling companion reveal a believable brotherly relationship. 1999 (orig.
School Library Journal
Gr 1-4 This is Grandpa's album, made for the family, of the photos and daily postcards that Stringbean Coe and his big brother Fred sent home to the folks the summer they traveled from Kansas to the Pacific in Fred's truck. It's a journey of discovery, all right; String bean's comments reveal reactions to their experiences and subtle changes in attitude. Tributaries to the mainstream of the trip itself include flare-ups be tween the brothers; Stringbean's home sickness; a growing awareness of fami ly history; a search for a clown with a missing shoe; and the appearance of Potato, the faithful dog who lit out from home to join Stringbean on the trip. Be cause of the skillfully-handled format, text and pictures don't just balance each otherthey depend on each oth er. It's a smooth collaboration, too, with the works of Williams senior and junior blending perfectly in style and spirit. The color postcards are full of affectionate and idiosyncratic detail, right down to the postage stamps. There are visual jokes that adults can enjoy, but never the kind that wink over the heads of children. The color work has that naive exuberance that Williams' fans have come to expect. This is a good-hearted celebration of life and experience, and a gift to the public. Karen Litton, Confederation Centre Public Library, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780688167011
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/28/1999
  • Edition description: 1 MULBERRY
  • Pages: 48
  • Sales rank: 396,998
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: 380L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 9.56 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 0.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Vera B. Williams is the creator of many distinguished books and was the U.S. Illustrator Nominee for the 2004 Hans Christian Andersen Award. She lives in New York City.

In Her Own Words...

"Throughout my childhood I was encouraged to make pictures, tell stories, act, and dance&#8212all of this at a heaven in our New York City neighborhood called the Bronx House.

"On Saturdays I painted with a crusading art director, Florence Cane. In her book The Growth of the Child Through Art, I appear under the name Linda. I was sixteen when the book appeared and embarrassed by it. But at age nine I had been totally proud when a painting of mine was exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art and I was later shown in the Movietone News explaining to Eleanor Roosevelt its Yiddish title, "Yentas."

"In 1945 I went to Black Mountain College in North Carolina, a unique educational community. I graduated in 1949 in graphic art, which I studied with Josef Albers. Along the way I planted corn, made butter, worked on the printing press, and helped to build the house in which I lived with Paul Williams, a fellow student I married there.

"I wanted that connection of art and community to continue. And it did at the Gate Hill Cooperative, a community we built with other Black Mountain people&#8212a poet, musicians, and potters. I lived and worked there from 1953-1970 (after which I moved to Canada). My children (Sarah, Jenny, and Merce) grew up there. For them, we branched out into a school, part of the Surnmerhill movement. The gingerbread houses that led to my first book for Greenwillow I first made in sticky variety at our school. I have always liked to teach, and have taught art, cooking, writing, and nature study, for nursery age on.

"At forty-six, no longer married, living in a houseboat on the bay at Vancouver, British Columbia, I did my first book. But before that could happen, the fates decreed a stint of cooking and running a bakery at a small school in the Ontario countryside. My love affair with Canada included also a 500-mile trip on the Yukon River. Many of those adventures I put in Three Days on a River in a Red Canoe.

"I also write and draw for adults-short stories, leaflets, and posters. As a lover of children, I try to do what I can to help save their earth from nuclear disaster. This pursuit, too, has added its excitement to my biography, including, in 1981, a month's stay in the federal penitentiary in Alderson, West Virginia (an outcome of a women's peaceful blockade of the Pentagon). Perhaps this experience will some day appear in one of my books. So far I've found children's books a wonderfully accommodating medium where any of my various activities might pop up."

Vera B. Williams is the award-winning creator of many books for children, including "More, More, More," Said the Baby: Three Love Stories and Amber Was Brave, Essie Was Smart. She lives in New York City.

Vera B. Williams es la premiada creadora de numerosos libros infantiles, entre ellos "Más Más Más" dijo el bebe. Vive en la ciudad de Nueva York.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 4, 2000

    The Fascinating Stringbean's Trip to the Shinning Sea

    Stringbean¿s Trip to the Shinning Sea is a fantastic book for many ages! It catches the reader¿s attention in interesting ways. It is made up of postcards Stringbean sent to his family back home. I loved the book so much that I bought it and read it over and over. I also read it to my sister, and she thought it was wonderful. As good as this book is, anyone would enjoy it. Every time I read this fascinating book it makes me joyful all day. I think you would feel the same way.

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