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Fishing Sunday

Fishing Sunday

by Tony Johnston, Barry Root (Illustrator)
One day, a boy sees something magical about Grandfather's handmade fish-hooks - and something magical about Grandfather himself.


One day, a boy sees something magical about Grandfather's handmade fish-hooks - and something magical about Grandfather himself.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Gisela Jernigan
A young Japanese American boy is embarrassed to be accompanying his Grandfather on a public fishing boat on Fishing Sundays. He is embarrassed by the old man's poor looking old clothes and bare feet, and by the way he is always talking respectfully to the fish, before and after catching them. On this particular Sunday, however, the boy comes to appreciate his Grandfather's almost magical knowledge and feeling for the sea, and even begins to appreciate him. Bright, gouache paintings depict the ocean environment well.
School Library Journal
K-Gr 3A young Japanese-American boy is embarrassed to be seen in public with his grandfather. On their Sunday fishing trips, the old man dresses in tattered clothes and walks barefoot, exposing ugly feet with sharp black toenails. On the boat, he begs the fish to come to him; when they do, he thanks them. But then one Sunday, the boy hears another fisherman imitating his grandfather, and even catching a fish, so he tries fish-talk himself. No luck, but Grandfather sees the boy's disappointment, comforts him, and gives him a fish-hook he has fashioned out of bone. The boy sees the beauty of the hook, and begins to see his grandfather in another light. Was it the gift that changed the boy's view? Or Grandfather's love? Or the respect shown by other fishermen? Johnston leaves it up to readers to decide. The illustrations, done in watercolor and gouache, are aglow with the sun and alive with the waves, and clouds, and the faces of the people. It is in the faces that the drama of the story can be seenGrandfather's love of life and of his grandson, the boy's growth from resignation to wonder and to love. It's a heartening story about the possibility of change.Virginia Golodetz, St. Michael's College, Winooski, VT

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Edition description:
1st ed
Product dimensions:
8.81(w) x 11.29(h) x 0.36(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Tony Johnston has written over one hundred beloved books for young people, including the picture books Cat, What Is That?, illustrated by Wendell Minor; The Whole Green World, illustrated by Elisa Kleven; and Chicken in the Kitchen, illustrated by Eleanor Taylor; and the middle-grade novel The Spoon in the Bathroom Wall. Tony Johnston lives with her family in California.

Barry Root has illustrated eighteen books for children, including Someplace Else, which was named a New York Times Best Illustrated Childrens Book. He lives in Lancaster County, PA, with his wife, two children, and two dogs.

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