The Farmer in the Dell

The Farmer in the Dell

by Alexandra Wallner, Alexandra Wallner

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Susie Wilde
This familiar favorite finds new expression in Wallner's American folk art style. It gives a proper sense of history to a song that has filled early memories for generations. We see a wedding in a small church, a happy country reception, birthing in a home filled with quilts, crockery, and jars of preserves. Lushness outside and warmth inside are enlivened by a small bit of conflict between cat and rat. A fine opportunity to sing a book.
Children's Literature - Tina Hudak
This book translates a traditional children's song into picture book format. Using a horizontal format, the pictures span the page, edge to edge, while the text is spread across the bottom fifth of the page. The watercolor illustrations provide an array of images. Each scene is filled with details of family farm life from an era gone-by. Mimicking the song, the family scenario progresses with new characters continually introduced. The final spread assembles all the characters, most notably the cheese as it "stands alone!" Young readers will enjoy the myriad of textures and scenes the illustrations provide. Yet, the two-dimensional folk-art style of the illustrations lack the movement of line to carry the tune. The flatness of the images in conjunction with the consistent placement of text compound this static feeling. While the illustrator's style is matched beautifully in her biographical work Laura Ingalls Wilder, here it proves difficult to accomplish. A special feature includes the nine stanzas plus melody for a musical instrument.
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
PreS-A new rendition of the traditional folk game song. Wallner's primitive folk art sparkles with life, action, and energy. The colored pen-and-ink illustrations are packed with details, making readers' eyes roam the pages in delight. Children familiar with the repetitive verses will be noting just how much more is happening in the background in this deceptively simple, visual title.-Ronald Jobe, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada
Kirkus Reviews
A favorite song of childhood gets Wallner's sprightly folk-art treatment in pen-and-ink and watercolor. The rural landscapes, done in a palette dominated by green, brown, orange, and yellow, have the look of crazy quilts pieced from calico. A field dotted with pumpkins intersects another dotted with haycocks, which butts up against an apple orchard, bordered by a sinuous strip of road. Interiors move the story forward; after the "the wife takes a child," the household falls into disarray, but is restored when "the child takes a nurse." A pouncing cat and the thieving rat propel things along, until the cheese stands alone and the family dances in the background. The music and lyrics are provided on the final page of this charming work. (Picture book. 4-8)

Product Details

Holiday House, Inc.
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
9.00(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

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