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Camille and the Sunflowers Hardcover – August 1, 1994


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Camille and the Sunflowers + Picasso and the Girl with a Ponytail (Anholt's Artists Books for Children) + van Gogh and the Sunflowers (Anholt's Artists Books for Children)
Price for all three: $27.83

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 and up
  • Grade Level: Kindergarten and up
  • Lexile Measure: 660L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Barron's Educational Series; 1st edition (August 1, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812064097
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812064094
  • Product Dimensions: 10.9 x 8.8 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #26,596 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 2-4-In this story that has roots in historical fact, Camille and his postman father meet a stranger who comes to their town with no money and no friends. They give him furniture and friendship, and he paints a picture of each member of their family. The boy visits the man and takes him sunflowers, but the townspeople drive Vincent away because he's too odd and he doesn't have what they consider a real job. This sad tale can stand alone, and, while it omits important details, its tone matches that of other accounts of Van Gogh's short life. Unfortunately, the CIP information, the names and locations of the Roulin family paintings, and a biographical note about Van Gogh are printed inside the book covers under the jacket flaps. The sketchy pen-and-watercolor illustrations are punctuated with seven fine art reproductions, including a little known "Portrait of Camille Roulin" and the famous "Vase with 14 Sunflowers." The Roulins and the yellow house in which the artist stayed when he was in Arles, France, are seen in context in Bruce Bernard's Van Gogh (Dorling Kindersley, 1993). The two books complement one another and provide a greater understanding of this gifted, troubled man.
Carolyn Jenks, First Parish Unitarian Church, Portland, ME
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Ages 4-8. Based on a true encounter, this tells the story of a small boy named Camille who befriends the troubled painter Vincent van Gogh when he comes to live in a village in the Dutch countryside. Camille is heartbroken because most of the local people jeer at the artist, who never sells a picture. Some of Anholt's illustrations are based on famous van Gogh scenes (the view of his bedroom, for example); Anholt also includes reproductions of actual paintings, such as van Gogh's Sunflowers, and portraits of Camille and his family. This book will show children how art transforms ordinary things. Pair it with Nichol's Beethoven Lives Upstairs , which is also about a strange, lonely genius who enters a child's daily life. Hazel Rochman

More About the Author

In a career spanning three decades, British author/illustrator Laurence Anholt has produced over 200 children's books, which are published in more than 30 languages. Books like the hilarious Seriously Silly Stories and the self-illustrated Anholt's Artists series have sold many millions of copies around the world. Laurence has also collaborated on numerous picture books with his wife, the artist, Catherine Anholt.

Born in 1959, Laurence Anholt was brought up mainly in Holland where he developed a lasting love of Art. He went on to study Painting for 8 years, culminating in a Master's Degree from the Royal Academy of Art in London. Catherine and Laurence live and work in a house on a hill with studios and wild flower meadow, overlooking the sea in Devon, southwest England.

Laurence's books have won numerous awards, including the prestigious Nestlé Smarties Gold Award on two occasions. For more than a decade, Laurence has been amongst the top 200 Most Borrowed Authors from UK libraries across all genres. He was included in the Independent on Sunday's Top 10 Children's Authors in the UK and was described by William Watt as "one of the most versatile authors writing for children today".

Catherine and Laurence have been closely involved with a number of literacy schemes such as the UK Government funded Bookstart scheme. Their publication Babies Love Books (also a much-loved picture book) encourages parents to share books with babies from the earliest possible age. Their work has taken the Anholts inside Buckingham Palace and Downing Street on several occasions.

Laurence's self‐illustrated Anholt's Artists series, is an introduction to great artists for young children. These beautiful books are used as part of the national school curriculum in many countries and are sold in galleries and museums all over the world. The books, which include Camille and the Sunflowers, Degas and the Little Dancer and The Magical Garden of Claude Monet have taken Laurence on many fascinating journeys of discovery. Each scrupulously researched story is based on an actual encounter between a real child and a great artist. In several instances, Laurence has been assisted by relatives of the artists or by the protagonists themselves - for example, Laurence developed a long-standing friendship with Sylvette David, Picasso's Girl With a Ponytail. This series currently includes 9 titles and it has been adapted in many forms, including Apps for iPads, stage and TV productions and a full scale van Gogh musical which Laurence launched in Korea. The Anholt's Artists books are renowned not only for their educational value, but also for their life-affirming themes of aspiration, tolerance and acceptance of those who are different.

2014 marks the 20th anniversary of the classic children's title, Camille and the Sunflowers (Van Gogh and the Sunflower in the US). This title has sold well over a million copies in numerous languages and continues to be reprinted year after year.

Laurence Anholt is a much sought after public speaker, talking about literature and his own zany view of life at conferences such as the European Council of International Schools Conference, the Society of Authors' Bi-Annual Conference and the Edinburgh Festival.

The Anholts have three grown up children, Claire and twins, Tom and Maddy. Claire currently works for the UN Secretariat in New York, Maddy is an actor living in London and Tom is a successful artist based in Berlin. Tom Anholt provided the artwork for Laurence's recent adult novel, Passionate Boy, which is set in the world of contemporary Fine Art.

Laurence Anholt's interests include art, literature, adventure travel and Buddhist meditation.

For further information visit the Anholts' website: http://www.anholt.co.uk

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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A beautiful book and a well written story.
pwhimsy
So overall, a great way to introduce the work of a compelling artist, the idea of being true to your own unique vision, and of honoring other's vision.
L. Erickson
So, the other day at the library the book Camille and the Sunflowers: A story about Vincent Van Gogh by Laurence Anholt caught my eye.
Jill Kasten

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Roz Levine on February 13, 2002
Format: Hardcover
"Where Camille lived, the sunflowers grew so high they looked like real suns - a whole field of burning yellow suns." So begins Laurence Anholt's engaging picture book about the relationship between the postman's son and Vincent van Gogh. As the story unfolds, Camille and his family befriend and help this strange painter. "Vincent came to live in the yellow house at the end of Camille's street. He had no money and no friends." Vincent painted day and night, portraits of Camille's family, the sunflower fields, even the starry night. "But no matter how hard Vincent worked, he could never sell any of his paintings." His work was never appreciated, and in the end the townfolk told him to pack up his paints and leave. "Listen Camille," said his father, "people often laugh at things that are different, but I've got a feeling that one day they will learn to love Vincent's paintings."..... Based on actual events, this simple and evocative story has a powerful message of tolerance and compassion for those who appear odd or unusual, and march to a different drummer. Mr Anholt's gentle and empathetic text is complemented by his lovely and expressive watercolor illustrations, and include reproductions of some of van Gogh's most famous paintings. Perfect for youngsters 4-8, Camille And The Sunflowers is an inspiring introduction to the artist, Vincent van Gogh, and his paintings, that shouldn't be missed.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By eric_the_redder on August 3, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This is simply one of the best books I ever got my daughter. When she was about 1-1/2 years old, we took her to a Van Gogh exhibition and she stared, absolutely transfixed, at "Wheat Field with Crows." So when I saw this book, it seemed like she would really enjoy it, and she has. Note that it is not an entirely happy story, true to Van Gogh's life, so it is maybe not for tiny kids. But even recomposed by Anholt, the paintings are still amazingly vivid and interesting, and led us on a web search to find more ([...] is the BEST spot!). If I could only have a few books to read to my daughter for the rest of her childhood, this would be on my list, and hers as well.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Miss Tresninos on February 14, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I bought this book for my son as it was recommended reading in his homeschool program. My son is not really "into" books but he really loved this one. He loved it so much that he wants to learn more about Vincent Van Gogh and see more of his works. (My son is only 7.)
This book is a great way to introduce your kids to Van Gogh and several of his most popular works.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 23, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Book tells the story of Van Gogh in Arles through the eyes of the Postmaster's son. Glosses over his illnesses (probably caused by heavy metal posioning from his paints). Very apropriate for elementary age, and reads aloud well. Teachers, Museum Educators, parents, or caregivers can follow up the story with an art activity based on his work. Discovering Great Artists : Hands-On Art for Children in the Styles of the Great Masters is an excelent source for activities.
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18 of 23 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 15, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I thought the illustrations were well executed. The graphicreference to Vincent's suicide would be upsetting to younger children.Why should his suicide be mentioned at all? He left a legacy ofbeauty. END
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By D. Blankenship HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on May 3, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This is the type of book that I do wish there were more of. I certainly am not going to go into plot, story-line, etc. here, as other reviewers have done so already and have accomplished it quite well. This story is based on a true encounter with the artist Vincent Van Gogh. This book is a wonderful tool to introduce children to the wonderful artist. It also has some wonderful lesson within it's pages dealing with acceptance and tolerance of those who are just a bit different than ourselves. The author has done a wonderful job with the text and the illustrations fit perfectly and are very well executed. The story is told through the eyes of a small boy. I have read this to quite a number of classes of children and they have all enjoyed it, which, when you think about it, is a pretty good indorsement for any children's book. This is certainly one you will want to add to your child's library.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 3, 1998
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book has made our 2-year-old a fan of Van Gogh, to the point that she now insists on making her crayon skies with swirls of blue instead of straight lines. Very nice introduction to the artist and a few of his best-known works, with a child-pleasing narrative. An adult, however, will get very tired of the extremely simple story after reading it to an eager pre-schooler for the zillionth time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Maz on June 14, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I think this story demonstrates a very sensitive handling of a small part of the story of Vincent van Gogh, in terms which a child would find very easy to understand. My only worry is that when my children are old enough for me to read it to them, I will have trouble choking back the tears.
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