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Blueberries for Sal (Viking Kestrel picture books) Hardcover – September 17, 1948


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Blueberries for Sal (Viking Kestrel picture books) + Make Way for Ducklings (Viking Kestrel picture books) + The Story of Ferdinand
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 and up
  • Grade Level: Preschool and up
  • Series: Viking Kestrel picture books
  • Hardcover: 55 pages
  • Publisher: Viking Juvenile; 1st edition (September 17, 1948)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0670175919
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670175918
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 11.4 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (188 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,776 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Kuplink, kuplank, kuplunk go the blueberries into the pail of a little girl named Sal who--try as she might--just can't seem to pick as fast as she eats. Robert McCloskey's classic is a magical tale of the irrepressible curiosity--not to mention appetite--of youth. Sal and her mother set off in search of blueberries for the winter at the same time as a mother bear and her cub. A quiet comedy of errors ensues when the young ones wander off and absentmindedly trail the wrong mothers.

Blueberries for Sal--with its gentle animals, funny noises, and youthful spirit of adventure--is perfect for reading aloud. The endearing illustrations, rendered in dark, blueberry-stain blue, will leave you craving a fresh pail of your own. (Picture book) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

Winner of A Caldecott Honor

"The adventures of a little girl and a baby bear while hunting for blueberries with their mothers one bright summer day. All the color and flavor of the sea and pine-covered Maine countryside."
-School Library Journal, starred review.

A Fuse8 Top 100 Picture Book title

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Customer Reviews

The story is charming and the illustrations are wonderful.
R. Parker
One of my most memorable books from childhood, as well as my children's, and now will be another grandchild's favorite.
ACBooks
A wonderful book that depicts Sal and her mother's adventure on blueberry hill.
Mrs. Suess

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

113 of 118 people found the following review helpful By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 28, 2000
Format: Hardcover
Little Sal and her mother go to Blueberry hill to pick berries, and they plan to can them as preserves for the winter. Little Sal soons starts eating all the berries she picks, plus some from her mother's pail. Encouraged to go off to find berries to pick by herself, mother and Sal become separated. On the other side of the mountain, Little Bear and his mother are coming to eat all the blueberries they can to get as fat as possible so they can survive the winter. They, too, get separated.
Soon, Little Sal stumbles onto following mother bear and Little Bear is following Sal's mother. Eventually, the mothers discover the mistake, back away in shyness from the other's child, and look for their own offspring. Along the way, the children run into bird mothers and their families as well. Everyone goes home with the correct mother, and the last drawing has Little Sal with her mother in an old-fashioned kitchen with a wood stove working on the preserves.
The story is gently and beautifully told, and wonderfully complemented by the illustrations (also drawn by Mr. McClosky).
It is a good introduction for children to the way that all human and animal families work, the need to prepare for the future, and that one has to pay attention to where one is going. It will also interest them in blueberry picking, which is a wonderful family occupation. It is also very heart-warming the way Mr. McClosky has taken the potential fright out of a situation where a child has wandered off and run into a mother bear. The child can draw her or his own lesson that they would not want that to happen to them, rather than having the story provide terror.
Mr. McClosky has expressed a benign but significant role to nature that will serve families well.
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40 of 40 people found the following review helpful By R. D. Allison (dallison@biochem.med.ufl.edu) on May 12, 1999
Format: Paperback
A children's book about a little girl named Sal who goes up into the hills to pick blueberries with her mother and eats as many blueberries as she puts into her pail! She encounters a mother bear and her cub also picking blueberries; but, soon the little cub is trailing Sal's mother while Sal is trailing the mother bear. McCloskey's blue and white illustrations are perfect for this story and it resulted in the book being a 1949 Caldecott Honor book (i.e., a runner-up to the Medal winner) for best illustration in a book for children. It is a must for the shelves of any parent of a preschooler or the shelf of any serious student of children literature.
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35 of 36 people found the following review helpful By M. Allen Greenbaum HALL OF FAMEVINE VOICE on February 7, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Famed author Robert McCloskey ("Make Way for Ducklings," "One Morning in Maine," and others) wrote and illustrated this gently humorous parallel tale of two moms and their daughters on a blueberry hunt. One pair is human, and the other pair is bear!. As they proceed up opposite sides of rolling hill covered in blueberries, each member of the species copies the other: The moms focus on the task at hand, remembering the harsh winter ahead; the children ("Little Sal" and "Little Bear") focus on the immediate pleasures of eating blueberries--so much so, that each gets lost.

In a deftly portrayed switch, McCloskey shows the Little Bear following Little Sal's mom, and Little Sal following the Little Bear's mom. The two lost children are unafraid of following the mismatched grown-ups (ok, so McCloskey takes some liberties in this very light book). Eventually the two moms turn around and see who is following: Little Bear's mother discovers Sal and turns away: ("She was old enough to be shy of people, even a very small person like Little Sal.") Meanwhile, Little Sal's mom discovers Little Bear, and the mother back away: ("She was old enough to be shy of bears, even very small bears like Little Bear.") Each pair reunites and returns home, with an adventure and berries to savor over the winter.

McCloskey's deep blue-black drawings complement the appealing symmetry and innocence of the book, and the period furnishings, uncluttered landscape, and fashions add to the book's sentimental and enduring attraction. This is a very good bedtime story for little ones who can appreciate an affectionate and tender book.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By waldorf_curric VINE VOICE on October 12, 2005
Format: Hardcover
OK, I have to admit that my review is probably completely unnecessary in view of the fact that there are already 55 positive ones but... I have vowed to make notes on all of the library books we check out each week so that, should I have a book faintly perched on the edge of my mind, I will be able to scan back through my reviews until I find the one I am remembering. That said, this book has been the naptime request of my 4 year old for several days and she "read" it to a pillow on the sofa just yesterday. She especially loves the phrase "Where, oh where, is my child?" She got that one dead-on. This is an excellent book for retelling and could be acted out very successfully in a short dramatic play in kindergarten. The plot is simple and fun and leads to great discussions about how humans prepare for winter (gathering the harvest, preserving foods by canning them) vs. animals who hibernate (that would be the bear). This book is, of course, need I say it???? A winner. You won't be disappointed if you purchase this one. And little Sal (Sally? It's a girl) is as cute as a button. With such wonderful 1940's illustrations, and a warm message, this book is a cozy reminder of days gone by.
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