This Way, Ruby!

Overview


This heartwarming story is perfect for welcoming spring--and is now available in paperback!

Ruby's brothers and sisters are always racing off in search of adventure. "This way, Ruby!" they call, but Ruby, who is still the littlest, likes to take things slowly. She prefers to look at all the grassy banks, the willow trees, and the dragonflies, which is just as well, for when the ducklings get lost in a storm, it's up to Ruby to find the way ...

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Overview


This heartwarming story is perfect for welcoming spring--and is now available in paperback!

Ruby's brothers and sisters are always racing off in search of adventure. "This way, Ruby!" they call, but Ruby, who is still the littlest, likes to take things slowly. She prefers to look at all the grassy banks, the willow trees, and the dragonflies, which is just as well, for when the ducklings get lost in a storm, it's up to Ruby to find the way back home!

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Uma Krishnaswami
Ducklings with alliterative names live beside a lake in this brightly illustrated picture book first published in the UK. This Way, Ruby! is reminiscent of stories with partly anthropomorphized animal characters, such as Martin Waddell's Owl Babies. The theme here is attending to the moment. Ruby is the small, steady exception to the super-charged energy of her siblings. While Mother Duck and Father Duck snooze one day, the ducklings go exploring, with Ruby struggling (as usual) to keep up because there's just so much to see. Dawdling by the waterfall and the golden fish, the water lilies and the dragonflies, Ruby not only notices the approaching storm, but also, in the end, recognizes enough of her surroundings to lead everyone home. The classic rhythms of a picture book are nicely established and maintained here. We move from safety into excitement, through danger and back again in a familiar story arc. The smudgy pastel pictures succeed in conveying both Ruby's small size in the large blue world of the lake, and the slightly manic scrambling of her siblings. As a system of serial naming, the alliterations feel a bit forced. In all, however, this is a sweet, comforting picture book, and the return home to the nest places it squarely in the cozy bedtime category.
School Library Journal
PreS
Mother and Father Duck have five ducklings. While all of the others are adventurous and plunge full-steam ahead into the water, Ruby, the smallest, prefers to swim slowly, looking at everything around her. She quite often falls behind, but her encouraging siblings call, "This way, Ruby!" One day, while they race along, she notices something her siblings have not-a storm coming their way-and they have no idea which way to turn. Luckily, Ruby's observational skills come to the rescue. This is a sweet book for preschoolers, who will enjoy the little bit of danger and the reassurance that Ruby will find the way home. Harry's illustrations are charming, giving each duckling its own personality. The pastel palette provides a sense of comfort and well-being throughout. Small details are tucked into each picture for children to discover. This follow-up to Ruby in Her Own Time (Scholastic, 2004) is perfect for storytimes and family sharing. Youngsters will be reassured to discover that not all ducks have to swim through life at the same pace.
—Susan E. MurrayCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Darling duckling Ruby, from Ruby in Her Own Time (2004), is still the littlest of the clutch, content to take things in her own time. When her bigger, bolder brothers and sisters race off to explore, Ruby prefers to take life more slowly, stopping to appreciate the waterfall, willow, fish and frogs along the way. "Look!" she cries. But the others do not stop. "THIS WAY, RUBY!" they call, unobservant in their hurry. So it's wee Ruby who first sees big black storm clouds sweeping across the sky; and when lightning alarms and disorients the ducks, it's Ruby who, though scared herself, uses the sights and sounds she has noticed as landmarks to navigate the way to safety. Harry's palette of lavender, blue, green and fuzzy, yummy yellow is perfect for her charmingly bedraggled little duckies and their friendly lakeside surroundings, and Emmett's musical, alliterative language (occasionally typeset to reflect the text) is gentle and engaging. (Picture book. 2-6)
From the Publisher

Booklist
Mama and Papa duck have five yellow offspring–Rufus, Rory, Rosie, Rebecca, and Ruby. While Rufus, Rory, Rosie, and Rebecca are energetic and adventurous, Ruby, distinguished by the three feathers that stick up on top of her head, is “small and steady,” and observant. But when the ducklings venture out on their own and become lost as a thunderstorm approaches, it's not Rufus, Rory, Rosie, or Rebecca who saves the day–– it's Ruby, proving that courage and caution must go hand in hand. The alliterative names provide a fun mantra to recite aloud, and the simple yet movement-filled illustrations, thickly brushed in soft nursery colors, depict a cast of darling ducklings, as deliciously fluffy and sweet as lemon chiffon pie. ––Stephanie Zvirin

Kirkus

Darling duckling Ruby, from Ruby in Her Own Time (2004), is still the littlest of the clutch,
content to take things in her own time. When her bigger, bolder brothers and sisters race off to explore,
Ruby prefers to take life more slowly, stopping to appreciate the waterfall, willow, fish and frogs along the way. “Look!” she cries. But the others do not stop. “THIS WAY, RUBY!” they call, unobservant in their hurry. So it's wee Ruby who first sees big black storm clouds sweeping across the sky; and when lightning alarms and disorients the ducks, it's Ruby who, though scared herself, uses the sights and sounds she has noticed as landmarks to navigate the way to safety. Harry's palette of lavender,
blue, green and fuzzy, yummy yellow is perfect for her charmingly bedraggled little duckies and their friendly lakeside surroundings, and Emmett's musical, alliterative language (occasionally typeset to reflect the text) is gentle and engaging. (Picture book. 2-6)
. . .

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780545169103
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 2/1/2010
  • Pages: 32
  • Sales rank: 1,008,266
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 7.80 (w) x 9.80 (h) x 0.10 (d)

Meet the Author


“I was born in Leicestershire in 1965, the son of a rig fitter and a primary school teacher. I was fascinated with books from an early age. As a small boy, I reorganised the spare bedroom of our house into a library for my parents' books. This might sound like a helpful thing for a child to do, but instead of ordering the books by subject or author, they were organised by size and colour, which made more sense to me at the time.
I can remember visiting our local library as a toddler. The picture books that we borrowed then, including "Where the Wild Things Are" by Maurice Sendak, "The Cat in the Hat" by Dr. Seuss and "Harold and the Purple Crayon" by Crockett Johnson have had a great influence on the picture books that I now write. The first children's novel that I read on my own was "The Folk of the Faraway Tree" by Enid Blyton. I went on to read other popular children's authors like C. S. Lewis, but like many children of my generation, the author who made the biggest impression on my early childhood was Roald Dahl.

It wasn't until I was about fourteen years old that it occurred to me that I might write for a living. I tried to make the covers of my school rough books look like the covers of novels. I produced a whole "Ruf Notes" trilogy as well as "A Complete Guide to Ruf Notes" each with its own reviews and biographical details on the inside covers and publisher's blurb on the back. Of course, there was nothing inside the books -except the rough notes that I took during lessons!
In 1984 I came to Nottingham to study architecture. It was while I was at college that I first started developing my skills as a writer and illustrator. I was in a band for a short time - it was a pretty crummy band. We never even played a gig, we just fooled around pretending to rehearse. But, because I was the only one that couldn't play an instrument, I had to sing (I am using the word 'sing' very loosely here) and this meant that I also had to write lyrics. I enjoyed this and kept on writing lyrics and poems long after the band had become no more than an embarrassing memory. Then, one day, I decided to try to do an illustration to accompany the lyrics to one of the songs. I was pleased with the result, so I illustrated some of my poems, spending more and more time on each picture. Click here to see some of these early illustrations!

As an architect, I worked on a wide variety of projects including an art gallery, a theatre and an airport check-in building. However, I was never very happy in the job and was always saying that I didn't want to be doing it in ten years time. My wife, Rachel, was always telling me - selflessly - that she would support me if I wanted to give up architecture in order to pursue a career as a writer / illustrator. But it was not an easy decision to make – I was afraid that I might give up a steady job only to find that I couldn't get anything published. However I eventually made the switch in 1995, a few months before my thirtieth birthday.

Fortunately, three months after leaving architecture I signed up with a good literary agent and a couple of months after that I sold my first pop-up book "Scraposaurus Wrecks". Unfortunately, although I completed the book, it was never published. This was a big disappointment, but the fact that I had sold the story, and been commissioned to illustrate and paper-engineer it, gave me the confidence to continue working on children's books and I subsequently succeeded in getting into print.

I am now a full time author / paper-engineer with a growing number of books in print and I really love my new job. I just wish I'd had the courage to start doing it earlier!
I live in Nottingham with my wife Rachel, and my children Max and Laura.”

Rebecca Harry studied graphic design and illustration in Exeter, Devon. She is the illustrator of I'M BIG ENOUGH NOW! and CATCH THAT KITTE

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