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Anna's Table
Contributor(s): Bunting, Eve, Morley, Taia (Illustrator)
ISBN: 1559718412     ISBN-13: 9781559718417
Publisher: Northword Pr
    OUR PRICE: $16.80  
Product Type: Hardcover
Published: March 2003
Qty:
Annotation: Anna describes the collection of natural things she keeps on the table in her bedroom, in a subtle celebration of the cycle of life by the Caldecott Award winning author of Smokey Night.
Additional Information
Library of Congress Subjects:
Nature; Fiction.
Collectors and collecting; Fiction.
BISAC Categories:
- Juvenile Fiction | Nature & The Natural World
- Juvenile Fiction | Animals
Dewey: [E]
LCCN: 2002032616
Academic/Grade Level: Grade 1-2, Age 6-7
Book type: Juvenile Fiction
Physical Information: 9.25" H x 11.00" W x 0.25" (1.05 lbs) 32 pages
Accelerated Reader Info
Quiz #: 70390
Reading Level: 3.3   Interest Level: Lower Grades   Point Value: 0.5
 
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.
Publisher Description:
In this heartwarming story, little Anna gathers bits of nature she and her family find, and she collects them on a special table given to her by her beloved aunt. Esteemed children's author Eve Bunting shows us the poetry of beach rocks and sea shells, mouse bones and dried pomegranates, a shark's tooth, an old bird's nest, and a piece of tree bark shaped like a hand. Young readers will delight in the treasures found on Anna's Table. Anna reminds readers of all ages "how clever nature is, " through growth, death and rebirth.

A subtle celebration of the cycle of life, this story is about the incredible bond of children to nature, the miracle of family, and a belief in the beauty of all things.


Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2003 March #3)
On a table against the wall in her room, narrator Anna displays wonders/ of the earth/ and sky and sea each treasured as both a marvel of nature and a memento of time spent with people she loves. A spiral shell that held a mollusk once reminds her of how her father waded into the ocean to retrieve it, only to get blindsided by a wave. He disappeared./ We cheered/ when he appeared again/ holding the shell/ above his head. Other items teach Anna about the fragility and interconnectedness of life: a mouse's bones found in an owl pellet, a lizard flattened by a car, butterflies killed by a sudden freeze. Bunting's (Smoky Night) narrative is bumpy, sometimes rhyming, other times not. She occasionally veers into the maudlin, but also finds eloquence in ostensibly reportorial prose: I have two dried and dusty nests/ that fell/ one windy night./ I have a shark's tooth/ and a geode,/ cracked across/ so I can see/ the crystal crumbs inside. Debut artist Morley juxtaposes impressionistic close-up portraits of items from the table with realistic, full-page (or larger) backdrops, framed in white, that transport readers to the time of the objects' discovery. The watercolor-and-ink paintings convey a beguiling spontaneity and vivacity, as if they were pages from an artist's sketchbook. With a publication that coincides with nature's annual renewal, this book should provide ample inspiration for readers to venture into the great outdoors and find their own treasures. Ages 5-8. (Apr.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.

Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2003 October)
PreS-Gr 3-A free-verse account of a child who keeps all of her treasures from nature on a table in her room. "I have a drift of butterflies,/their colors orange bright./We found them in the grass/one night/after a cold strong wind/and sudden freeze/swept them from the trees." She also has a blue jay's feather, the backbone of a garter snake, a seagull's skull, and many other distinctive items. Anna's quiet pleasure in these things and her close family ties are admirable, and the colorful paintings are skillfully executed, with lots of joy and warmth. However, while the story has flashes of Bunting's characteristic charm and a worthwhile message, it lacks dramatic tension. Add it if you have a large collection and/or a ready audience for thoughtful nature books. Otherwise, buy extra copies of Bunting's Butterfly House (Scholastic, 1998) and/or Secret Place (Clarion, 1996), also beautifully illustrated stories revolving around environmental themes.-Lauralyn Persson, Wilmette Public Library, IL Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.