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AN APPLE PIE FOR DINNER

Author: Susan VanHecke

Illustrator: Carol Baicker-McKee

Reserve at the Library

Publisher: Marshall Cavendish Children's Books, ©2009

Material: hard cover

Summary: Granny wants to make an apple pie for dinner. She has all the ingredients except one: APPLES! She only has plums. So she takes her plums to see if she can trade someone for apples. She finds someone who will trade feathers for her plums, and what follows is a cycle of bartering for various goods (feathers, flowers, gold, a puppy). At the last stop, she finally finds her apples and invites EVERYONE to her home, where they all work together to make the apple pie and, of course, eat it! This picture book has a house-that-jack-built and a Jack and the Beanstalk quality to it.

Type of Reading: anytime reading, family reading, read aloud book, independent reading

Recommended Age: read together: 2 to 6; read yourself: 7 to 10

Interest Level: 2 to 10

Reading Level: 2.5

Age of Child: Read with boys ages 3 and 5.

Young Reader Reaction: My boys enjoyed the book It was wonderful to talk to them about trading and trying to help other people out to meet their needs. I picked it the first time and they picked it other times.

Adult Reader Reaction: I loved the book. Granny was a loving and giving character. She ALWAYS gave what she had before she learned what the other had to trade in return; and she accepted whatever she was given, trusting that, in the end, she might find her apples. The artwork is phenomenal - it appears to be a collage-relief, using polymer clay and mixed media such as fabric, ribbon, trim, etc. It is very creative, colorful, and interesting in and of itself. Makes you want to take a closer look to investigate.

Pros: This is a story with colorful, beautiful illustrations and a fun story. The message is great and although it doesn't say "thanksgiving" it would be a great pick!

Cons: None.

Borrow or Buy: Buy ... or at least make it a priority to check this out from the library. There is a recipe for an apple pie at the end, which makes this a great book to extend into other areas. If you live in an area where you can buy local apples, pair it with a trip to the orchard to make your own apple pie from apples you picked yourself!

If You Liked This Book, Try: THE DAY I SWAPPED MY DAD FOR TWO GOLDFISH   LILY AND THE PAPER MAN   GRANDMA'S PEAR TREE / EL PERAL DE ABUELA

Educational Themes: Economics of the bartering system. Working together/cooperation. Helping your neighbors.

Notes: The publisher donated a copy of this book knowing that we would consider it for review and provide an independent, unbiased profile. This book will be given to a nonprofit to help readers in need.

Literary Categories: Fiction -

Date(s) Reviewed: March 2011

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