Written and illustrated by Wende and Harry Devlin
Simon & Schuster, 1971, Fiction, ages 4-8
Holidays, Misunderstandings, Appearances
"Maggie darted about like a black-stockingbird, in search of wood for the fireplace. She and her grandmother lived at the edge of a lonely cranberry bog in New England, and the winds were cold at the edge of the sea."
Grandma's favorite day of the year is Thanksgiving. She is always generous with the food on her table, but not so the recipe for her coveted cranberry bread. Maggie and her grandmother each invite a friend for dinner, but not everyone knows how to mind their manners. While they are enjoying Grandma's homemade fare, someone plans to make off with the secret recipe.
What I Love:
This book is over forty years old, and while it may be a little text-heavy for some of today's editors, the prose is as lovely as any modern writer's. The illustrations are an unusual mix of watercolor and ink line, but they only serve to reinforce the old-fashioned New England setting. The colors are lively. The characters are, well, adorable! Harry Devlin's composition is superb. Wende's storyline, timeless. This book could easily be published today, and has in fact been reissued by Purple House Press.
|Thanks to Today's Inspiration illustration blog for this gorgeous interior art by Harry Devlin.
|Thanks to GoodIdeasandTips
2. Cranberry Thanksgiving includes the not-so-secret recipe for Grandmother's cranberry bread. Readers will love baking a loaf or two, just like the characters in the story. If you can't wait, click here.
4. Use the opportunity to learn how cranberries grow. Visit a bog, like this one in Cape Cod.
5. If anyone finds instructions for a great yarn beard like Mr. Whiskers's, please email the link to me. I'll keep looking.
Check out all the recommended titles for Perfect Picture Book Friday
for November 15, 2013, available on Susanna Leonard Hill's excellent blog.