The Swing

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Overview

"How do you like to go up in a swing?" 

Delightful images by Julie Morstad bring to life Robert Louis Stevenson's classic poem The Swing. Share this gorgeous board book with your baby or toddler and revel in the magical images and words.

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Morstad, Julie Vancouver 2012 Hard cover Fair. A readable copy of the book which may include some defects such as highlighting and notes. Cover and pages may be creased and show ... discolouration. 16 p. Col. Illustrations. Intended for a juvenile audience. *****PLEASE NOTE: This item is shipping from an authorized seller in Europe. In the event that a return is necessary, you will be able to return your item within the US. To learn more about our European sellers and policies see the BookQuest FAQ section***** Read more Show Less

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The Swing

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Overview

"How do you like to go up in a swing?" 

Delightful images by Julie Morstad bring to life Robert Louis Stevenson's classic poem The Swing. Share this gorgeous board book with your baby or toddler and revel in the magical images and words.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
Review of When I Was Small:

Quill and Quire Review:

Ever curious Henry, whose enquiries about the recent past formed the basis of Sara O’Leary and Julie Morstad’s previous collaborations, When You Were Small and Where You Came From, has another question for his mother, this time asking her for a story about when she was small. Henry’s mother answers with a series of very short, beautifully bizarre anecdotes delivered at the pace of one per page.

The book takes the idea of Henry’s mother being “small” literally – she is pictured skipping rope with a ball of yarn, swimming in a birdbath, and standing on a spool of thread. The dreamy quality of both text and image gives the book a slightly low-energy feel, but it may be the perfect thing for a kid who is just a little quiet, a little shy, but still inquisitive – a child not unlike Henry. The result is a perfect antidote for parents whose retinas have been scorched by too much Dora the Explorer.

Small visual details, such as the frequent hand-lettering and the spot illustrations, add to the book’s quiet impact. The framing of the narrative, with Henry’s question at the beginning and his mother’s comments at the end, gives kids something concrete to hang onto throughout.

When I Was Small is not only a charming picture book, but by focusing on the parent’s past instead of the child’s, it also has the potential to be a great conversation starter.

Reviews and Awards for Singing Away the Dark

Finalist for the 2011-2012 Chocolate Lily Awards

Finalist for the 2011 Marilyn Baillie Award, Canadian Children's Book Centre!

Finalist for the 2011 Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Award Shortlist

Finalist for the 2011 Shortlist for the Ruth and Sylvia Schwartz Children's Book Awards 

Kirkus Review

In the back of beyond, a girl sets out for the schoolbus stop, a good long cross-country hike away. It’s winter. The snow nearly tops her boots; the fog of her breath streams behind her. It’s still dark, artfully evoked by the deep inkiness of Morstad’s night sky (played off against luminescent birch trunks and dazzled by a pair of red mittens and a yellow lunchbox) and Woodward’s verse: “I don’t allow myself to stop / to look between the trees, / to peer at shapes that shift and hide / where it’s too dark to see.” The pictures and text follow her as she wends over hill and hollow, breaking into song to keep the specters at bay and stave off cold. The tingly spookiness of the rural dark is slowly, gently beveled as the story takes on the dawn, as the girl passes a farm getting its day under way in the early hours, the lights of the bus cutting through the remnants of night. Night can be a very alien world, but this beckoning book is like an invitation to come walk there. (Picture book. 4-8

Kirkus Reviews
A board-book version of Stevenson's classic poem with retro illustrations. "How do you like to go in a swing, // Up in the air so blue? // Oh, I do think it the pleasantest thing / Ever a child can do!" begins this ode, one of the poet's best-loved poems from A Child's Garden of Verses. Morstad's paintings, reminiscent of Gyo Fujikawa's work, feature a multiracial cast of children flying on swings in various bucolic settings. Her throwback color palette, of yellow-greens paired with pale pinks on dark backgrounds, and the classic clothes worn by the youngsters in each scene blend well with Stevenson's more formal language. The youngest readers may have a difficult time relating to the images (the swings depicted are not the enclosed baby swings with which they are familiar, and the recognizable A-shaped swing frame almost always appears off the page), but older toddlers should be able to make the visual leap. The cover is a little dark and the girl a little serious, so here's hoping prospective readers will take a look inside. The joy within repays daring readers amply. (Board book. 2-4)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781897476482
  • Publisher: Simply Read Books
  • Publication date: 11/5/2012
  • Pages: 16
  • Age range: 1 - 3 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 6.40 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Robert Louis  Stevenson

  Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-94), was a Scottish novelist, essayist and poet who contributed several classics to the world of children’s literature. He is best known for A Children's Garden of Verses, Treasure Island, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and Kidnapped.

Julie Morstad is an award-winning illustrator and fine artist known for her surreal, whimsical work. Illustrator of numerous children’s books, including Singing Away the Dark and When You Were Small and its two sequels Where You Came From and When I Was Small, Julie has exhibited her work in galleries, animated two music videos with her brother, filled up stacks of sketchbooks, and made countless pots of soup and many loaves of bread. She lives in Vancouver with her family.

Biography

Robert Louis Stevenson was born in 1850 in Edinburgh. His father was an engineer, the head of a family firm that had constructed most of Scotland's lighthouses, and the family had a comfortable income. Stevenson was an only child and was often ill; as a result, he was much coddled by both his parents and his long-time nurse. The family took frequent trips to southern Europe to escape the cruel Edinburgh winters, trips that, along with his many illnesses, caused Stevenson to miss much of his formal schooling. He entered Edinburgh University in 1867, intending to become an engineer and enter the family business, but he was a desultory, disengaged student and never took a degree. In 1871, Stevenson switched his study to law, a profession which would leave time for his already-budding literary ambitions, and he managed to pass the bar in 1875.

Illness put an end to his legal career before it had even started, and Stevenson spent the next few years traveling in Europe and writing travel essays and literary criticism. In 1876, Stevenson fell in love with Fanny Vandergrift Osbourne, a married American woman more than ten years his senior, and returned with her to London, where he published his first fiction, "The Suicide Club." In 1879, Stevenson set sail for America, apparently in response to a telegram from Fanny, who had returned to California in an attempt to reconcile with her husband. Fanny obtained a divorce and the couple married in 1880, eventually returning to Europe, where they lived for the next several years. Stevenson was by this time beset by terrifying lung hemorrhages that would appear without warning and required months of convalescence in a healthy climate. Despite his periodic illnesses and his peripatetic life, Stevenson completed some of his most enduring works during this period: Treasure Island (1883), A Child's Garden of Verses (1885), Kidnapped (1886), and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1886).

After his father's death and a trip to Edinburgh which he knew would be his last, Stevenson set sail once more for America in 1887 with his wife, mother, and stepson. In 1888, after spending a frigid winter in the Adirondack Mountains, Stevenson chartered a yacht and set sail from California bound for the South Pacific. The Stevensons spent time in Tahiti, Hawaii, Micronesia, and Australia, before settling in Samoa, where Stevenson bought a plantation called Vailima. Though he kept up a vigorous publishing schedule, Stevenson never returned to Europe. He died of a sudden brain hemorrhage on December 3, 1894.

Author biography from the Barnes & Noble Classics edition of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

Good To Know

It has been said that Stevenson may well be the inventor of the sleeping bag -- he described a large fleece-lined sack he brought along to sleep in on a journey through France in his book Travels with a Donkey in the Cevennes.

Long John Silver, the one-legged pirate cook in Stevenson's classic Treasure Island, is said to be based on the author's friend William Ernest Henley, whom he met when Henley was in Edinburgh for surgery to save his one good leg from tuberculosis.

Stevenson died in 1894 at Vailima,, his home on the South Pacific island of Upolu, Samoa. He was helping his wife make mayonnaise for dinner when he suffered a fatal stroke.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Robert Louis Balfour Stevenson
    1. Date of Birth:
      November 13, 1850
    2. Place of Birth:
      Edinburgh, Scotland
    1. Date of Death:
      December 3, 1894
    2. Place of Death:
      Vailima, Samoa

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2013

    Simple & sweet with beautiful illustrations..

    Simple, short & sweet with beautiful illustrations.
    Our 21-mo old daughter loves this book! She likes to point out specifics & say, "birdy, apple, weee!, moooo, boat, sun" after we read through it at least once. It's short and sweet, but definitely a hit in our house.

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  • Posted August 3, 2013

    Charming!

    This is the old poem if you're a certain age you'll remember from your childhood and it's illustrated with great charm and any child would like it and a grandparent or parent would enjoy reading it to their little person.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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