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The Biggest Valentine Ever Paperback – January 1, 2006


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 5 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - Kindergarten
  • Lexile Measure: 610L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Cartwheel Books (January 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 043976419X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0439764193
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 7.7 x 0.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.3 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #194,841 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Steven Kroll was the author of over fifty books for children and young adults, including the New York Times bestselling The Biggest Pumpkin Ever.

Jeni Bassett has illustrated more than thirty children's books, including The Biggest Pumpkin Ever, The Squirrel's Thanksgiving, and It's Groundhog Day. She lives in Altamonte Springs, Florida.

More About the Author

Steven grew up in New York City, on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Steven's parents were very stylish. His father had a mustache and wore suits with a vest and a watch chain. His mother wore fashionable dresses and big hats. She was a great storyteller, which is probably where his love of telling stories began.

But he also had his Upper West Side neighborhood, a wonderful ethnic stew of Jewish, Latino, Chinese, and Viennese. Wandering those streets, experiencing the restaurants and the pastry shops, the delicatessens and the movie theater, the corner drug store and the corner book shop, Steven began to recognize a wider world, a world outside his own that would make him want to tell stories, travel, and be a writer.

Many of his books have come out of that neighborhood. The kids in his building all played downstairs together, under the watchful eye of Gordon, the doorman. The sharing they did can be found in THE BIGGEST PUMPKIN EVER and its sequels. The bullying, followed by sharing, can be found in JUNGLE BULLIES. The spark for his two novels of Italian immigrants in 1890's New York, SWEET AMERICA and WHEN I DREAM OF HEAVEN, came from hours listening to his night watchman, Tony, tell stories in the lobby after my Saturday night dates.

And there was Riverside Park, just a block away, where he played stickball near the railroad yards and cowboys and Indians on the green lawns, and where he watched an endless parade of dogs that morphed into an endless parade of dog stories, from IS MILTON MISSING?, his very first book, to A TALE OF TWO DOGS and POOCH ON THE LOOSE, his ode to New York at Christmastime.

Steven attended Hunter College Elementary School and McBurney. From there, he went to Harvard, graduating with a degree in American History and Literature. He decided to become an editor instead of a writer, improving other people's books instead of writing his own. But finally, he had to get out of publishing and write. He moved to Maine and struggled, writing now for both children and adults. Four years later, back in New York, Steven met a children's book editor named Margery Cuyler, who was the first to publish his work. He wrote 100 books for children, everything from picture books to American history to novels for young adults.

Steven married a journalist, Kathleen Beckett, and lived in NYC and an old carriage house in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. He spoke at schools and conferences all over the world.

Steven Kroll passed away on March 8, 2011 following complications from surgery. He was the beloved author of the New York Times Bestseller's list "Biggest Ever" series from Scholastic. Two writing awards have been established in Steven's name: the Steven Kroll/PEN American Center Award for the best text of an illustrated children's book, and the Steven Kroll Writing Award, given to a deserving student at St. Joseph's School in the Bronx.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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See all 22 customer reviews
The story was so sweet and great reading for beginners.
Sharmin Skeete
It's a hard lesson and being reminded of it using colorful illustrations of adorable mice is a nice way to visualize the story.
Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids Book Reviews
It was a great Valentines gift for the little one (who is 2 years old).
Dana

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Nicki Heskin VINE VOICE on February 7, 2009
Format: Paperback
This is a nice little story for children about working together, that is set nicely during Valentine's Day. Two little boys start to create a valentine for their teacher, but begin to fight about what the other did "wrong" and decide to go it alone. But when they aren't really happy with their solo results either, they decide to give it another go together.

The ultimate message is that while working together sometimes means not having things exactly the way you would have done it, it also means being able to use one another's strengths and talents to make something better than either would be able to create alone. And what they end up creating is bigger and better than either of them would have conceived of on their own.

The story itself is pretty simplistic and the message is very accessible for young school-aged children. Probably best for preschool-age and older as a read-to-me book, or a good early reader book (probably 2nd grade level and up) to read alone.

The illustrations are nice -- nothing spectacular or memorable as a standalone effort, but they tell the story well. I like that the little boys show no issues with using pink hearts and glitter as befits Valentine's Day -- no needless attempt to have them make a "boy" valentine. They even dress their final attempt with lace doily. :-) That does a nice job at making this book accessible for both boys and girls.

The only thing that strikes me as a bit odd is the first page of the book, which says "Once there were two mice who fell in love with the same valentine, but it didn't start out that way." I don't really see what that has to do with the rest of the story and it doesn't really make sense (I've tried to relate it, to no avail), but it doesn't bother me that much, because I had forgotten about it by the end of the story.

Overall, I think this is a nice read for a home story, or for a classroom read.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Jolina M. Shue on February 14, 2011
Format: Paperback
During February we talk about friendship in my kindergarten class. We brainstorm ways we can be a good friend, how to talk to one another, and how friends should work together nicely and play cooperatively. This book ties in PERFECTLY! It addresses all the above mentioned concepts of friendship and is a very sweet story. My students loved it and wanted repeat readings of it. You will enjoy reading this to a preschool-first grade class or to your own 4-7 yr old. Due to the length and friendship conflict I would recommend it for ages 4 and up.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By C. Meadows on April 2, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My grandson loved the book and had his parents read it to him several times on Valentine's Day. Thanks for the quick way to send a gift to him.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By M. Ferguson on March 1, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I ordered this as a Valentines Day gift. It was just expected. It is a paperback, better for kids over 3 yrs.
Cute book!
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Kate on January 18, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I like this book because the story and illustrations are cute, but most of all because it isn't just a television character holiday book. I think it has more staying power.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By SUSANA VILLARREAL on August 9, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
We love this story as it was read in class. The students wanted to read it more than one time.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By aderynbach on June 6, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I teach first grade and my students, both boys and girls alike, really enjoyed this book. I highly recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Meme on March 25, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My two grandchildren love this book! Sending it in the mail to them for Valentines day completed the suprise! Reading with their parents provided both a memorable experience. Hearing them tell me about it was as good as it gets...
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