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My Aunt Came Back (Harper Growing Tree) Hardcover – February 28, 1998


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Cummings combines rollicking verse with vibrant full-page illustrations to create an eye-catching, toe-tapping board book. "My aunt came back/from Timbuktu/She brought me back/a wooden shoe" is one of the seven rhymes that features a jazzy young woman who brings presents from all over the world to her adoring niece. While places such as Bucharest, Pakistan, and Beijing, and items such as a parasol (from Montreal) and a red beret (from Mandalay) will be new to most preschoolers, the lilting text will have them chanting along before too many repeat readings. Each full-page spread depicts the earth's curvature in the background, a building native to the area of the aunt's visits on the left side, and the child's world on the right. The expressive African-American characters, brimming with joy, are vintage Cummings. An appealing offering by a multitalented author/illustrator.
Tom S. Hurlburt, La Crosse Public Library,
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kirkus Reviews

An unusual board book--and entry in the Harper Growing Tree series--that stars an irresistible aunt and a galloping text. Seven destinations and verses describe her travels, e.g., ``My aunt came back from Timbuktu/She brought me back a wooden shoe./My aunt came back from Pakistan/She brought me back a painted fan.'' At the end, the niece becomes a traveler, too. Every spread shows the curve of the earth in the background, with a building in the style of the country the aunt has visited on the left, and the niece's apartment building on the right. The aunt wears wild and exotic clothing throughout, and sports wonderfully decorated and adorned braids, but what emerges is her independence and sense of adventure, which she succinctly and affectionately passes on to her niece in very few pages. (Board book. 1-3) -- Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 2 and up
  • Series: Harper Growing Tree
  • Hardcover: 14 pages
  • Publisher: HarperFestival; Brdbk edition (February 28, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0694010596
  • ISBN-13: 978-0694010592
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,061,298 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

In addition to the Coretta Scott King, the Orbis Pictus, the NAACP Image Award and the Boston Globe-Horn Book awards, Pat Cummings is the recipient of nine t-shirts, twenty two mugs, seven hundred forty-five ballerina drawings and one embroidered pillow from readers. After graduating from Pratt Institute she began a career as a freelance illustrator, working on editorial, advertising, theatrical and, eventually, picture book projects .
Pat is the author and/or illustrator of over 35 books, both fiction and non-fiction, from board books to young adult. Her TALKING WITH ARTISTS series features prominent children's book illustrators while TALKING WITH ADVENTURERS, co-authored and edited with her sister, Linda Cummings Minor, PhD. features interviews and profiles of explorers and scientists such as Jane Goodall and Robert Ballard.
She has worked as a producer and writer for Nickelodeon's Gullah Gullah Island and now teaches children's book illustration and writing at Parsons, The New School for Design and Pratt Institute. Former gifted and award-winning students of her class include David Eza Stein, Hiroe Nakata and Julian Hector.
Born in Chicago, Illinois, Pat was an Army brat and grew up in Germany, Okinawa, Kansas and Virginia. She and her husband Chuku Lee, author of her latest book, live in a loft in beautiful downtown Brooklyn, New York. Their new picture book, BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, is due from HarperCollins in February 2014.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Cara Weddington on September 18, 2005
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love this book. It is perfect for smaller kids who like to see colorful pictures and want to turn the pages. It takes you all over the world and introduces them to far away places. Most importantly, my African American 2year old son gets a chance to see characters who look like him. Also, he learned in different languages how to say good bye. He sometimes skips to the end and likes saying the words of the last page with me! "Ciao, Adios, Sayonara, Aloha .... BYE!"
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 30, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This is a wonderful book. I thought it might have been difficult for my 14 month old to grasp some of the vocabulary, however she LOVES it. It is one of her favorite books right now. I can read it over and over and she laughs every time! Delightful and fun, I very highly recommend this book.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By "bethanrose" on July 25, 2002
Format: Hardcover
This book has a sense of song. The beautiful rhythmic words are perfectly matched with the spirited pictures. It is a comforting book, that reassures children their loved ones will return, no matter where they go. It conveys strong love from a distance, without being sappy.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By jules on July 24, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I bought this book for my niece when she was about one because I live far away from her and travelled frequently. Her mom enjoyed reading it with her especially right before I visited and then I would read it just before I left. It helped a lot. She is now older and we have gone on a few vacations together. I just purchased it for her to give her niece.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By "kskulley" on February 16, 2000
Format: Hardcover
My little boy and I really enjoy this book. It has bright colored pages. It is short. It is imaginative. It is different. It is simple. We feel like we have visited all the different places mentioned just from reading it. After reading the book, we talk about where else we would visit and what we could bring back.
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