Tuesday, October 16, 2018
A Home in the Barn, written by Margaret Wise Brown and illustrated by Jerry Pinkney. Harper, 2018. $21.99 ages 3 and up
Never before published, this new book by the prolific Margaret Wise Brown is perfect fare for the illustrative genius of Jerry Pinkney. It begins and ends with a repetitive refrain:
"Here is the barn
Hear the wind rattle
Open the door
And see all the cattle."
What a lovely invitation! I am going to take this with me when I go to visit my granddaughters next week. They are currently enthralled with a new farm set and spend endless hours caring for the animals and their housing. I know they enjoy this book as much as I do.
Winter is just around the corner, and it's time for all animals to seek the warmth and safety of the big red barn. Each turn of the page provides new text that evokes the sights, sounds and the urgency for finding shelter. Jerry Pinkney focuses attention fully on the animals and their comfort as they settle into nests in the rafters, soft bundles of straw, cozily-lined pens, and the warmth of a birthing bed for a newly-arrived calf. The farmer and his son are there when needed. As the wind howls and the plethora of animals hunkers down, the warmth spreads and peace falls over their shelter.
The radiant warmth of the pencil, watercolor, gouache and pastel images creates a comfortable, peaceful setting. Young readers will appreciate extra time while reading to note the many captivating details included to hold their attention.