A bereaved husband and his grieving little girl finally find a way to talk to each other about the woman they both loved and both miss, as a year unfurls through the seasons. Ron Himmler’s illustrations are so tender.
Publication Date: March 31, 1990
Written with a sure and gentle touch, this is a moving exploration of the inevitability of death, and of the possibilities of growth and happiness for those who survive the death of a loved one.
School Library Journal
Grade 2-4– A gentle story of nature ‘ s rhythms. Her mother has died, but to 11-year-old Sarah, she is still everywhere–in twirly skirts, spaghetti with basil, a sweater with cows on it–and thinking about her still hurts. In the ensuing year, Sarah’s grief mellows into a bittersweet acceptance as she and her father watch the promises of the seasons–the pumpkins of autumn heralding winter, crocuses announcing spring–and together they come to know that despite setbacks, even tragic ones, life does and will continue. The father-daughter relationship is a tender, well-drawn one with plenty of details, thoughtful dialogue, and glimpses of the father’s different, but also real sense of loss. There is a discrepancy in Sarah’s depiction, however, both in text and illustration. Her words and actions seem immature for her age, and she is shown in Himler ‘ s pencil drawings as a much younger child . This presents a problem in determining the story’s audience. The real shame, though, is the presentation of this delicate, almost meditative story in such an uninviting fashion. Instead of a graceful picture-book format, the text is forced onto small pages with too-close margins and gutters. Chapter follows chapter undistinguished from one another, with the illustrations tightly sandwiched where a space opens up. This treatment does justice to neither text nor illustration and reduces the effectiveness of both. This is a loving gift of a story presented in a sadly unappealing package.
– Joanne Aswell, Long Valley Middle School, NJ
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.
- Hardcover: 32 pages
- Publisher: Atheneum; childrens book edition (March 31, 1990)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0027331229
- ISBN-13: 978-0027331226
- Product Dimensions: 9 x 5.9 x 0.5 inches
- Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces