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Johnny Appleseed Hardcover – August 22, 1988

4.7 out of 5 stars 28 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Johnny Appleseed (his real last name was Chapman) is reintroduced in this succinct rendition of the life of a beloved American folk hero, from his birth in Massachusetts in 1774 to his death in Indiana in 1845. Kellogg chronicles Johnny's travels throughout the land, his legendary scattering of appleseeds (originally culled from the orchards he frequented as a child) and his storytelling of Bible and adventure stories to the children and adults he meets along the way, which were embroidered as they were passed along by word-of-mouth). Kellogg's illustrations illuminate a man that all schoolchildren know, in a polished blend of fact and fiction. All ages.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Grade 1-4 In the image of his Pecos Bill (1986) and Paul Bunyan (1984, both Morrow), Kellogg has created Johnny Appleseed perhaps the most colorful and appealing of this tall tale trio. Readers are skillfully lead into the story by means of colorful endpapers, title page, and frontispiece showing Johnny scattering seeds, checking on his saplings, and, as an old man, gathering apples. Illustrations are done in paint and pen and ink on textured paper in the muted greens, browns, and blues of the frontier woodlands, the red of the apples providing the only bright color. While several two-page panoramas are included, most illustrations fill two-thirds of the page, many bursting out of their white-bordered frames, and all of them brimming with the lush detail for which Kellogg has become famous. Indians, pioneers, and animals of woodland and farm, covered wagons and bargesall drawn in his familiar cartoon-like stylebring the frontier days to life. The brief text combining legend with fact, coupled with the picture book format, makes this life of Johnny Appleseed the most accessible and entertaining one available for young children. Johnny's unchanging youthful appearance throughout most of the book is the one disturbing flaw in this eye-catching volume. Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, Ohio
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 920 (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; First Edition edition (August 22, 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0688064175
  • ISBN-13: 978-0688064174
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.4 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #51,470 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Library Binding
Almost 5 Stars

In this wonderfully illustrated children's book, Steven Kellogg mixes history and legend to tell a charming tale. Sometimes, the illustrations tell the story without the need for words.

Because of the lengthy text on the pages and the more mature vocabulary used, as well as two different discussions about death, this book is really geared towards the eight to twelve category.

The author includes a note at the end of the book to clarify where history ends and legend beings--as well as can be done. And the map at the back of the book will help children visualize his life-long journey.
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Format: Hardcover
My children and I seem to be on a Johnny Appleseed binge. This is one of the three books that we have read lately and our second favorite.

This book begins with some background on John Chapman, his birth, his mother's and baby brother's early death, and his fathers remarriage and the subsequent household that resulted in 11 children.

We are given to understand that young John retreated to the outdoors to escape "from his boisterous household" (lol). And we are told that animals sensed his gentleness and responded in kind. We also see John befriending Indians and clearing the woods in spots to plant his beloved trees.

Much of the old ways of life are shown. There are pictures of covered wagons being pulled by oxen, as well as a house raising. The War of 1812 is mentioned briefly, as well as the fears settlers had of the Indians at that time. Unlike Aliki's book, this one does not describe how some of the difficulties with the Native Americans came as a result of the actions of the settlers. And you don't quite get the sense of there being good settlers and bad, good Indians and bad, as you do from the latter book.

Still this book has much to teach and there is a lot to point out and discuss. Besides the factual matters mentioned above there are several tall tales such as the one about the soles of John's feet being so tough that a rattlesnake fangs couldn't penetrate them, and the one about his frolicking with bear cubs while mama bear watched.

[By the way, this book does a better job than most in pointing out that many of these stories are tall tales.]

The book ends with Johnny going further west into the wilds of Indiana (LOL) where he eventually runs into the children of the children he used to tell stories to.

Four stars. A very nice book. The artwork is distinctive and there are many opportunities for children to learn some of our country's folk heroes.
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A Kid's Review on March 10, 2003
Format: Hardcover
John Chapman was born on Sept. 26, 1774. He had a rough childhood when his father left for the Revolutionary War and his mother and brother died before his second birthday. His father eventually remarried by the time he was six. The Chapman�s lived on an apple orchard and used the apples for many things including sauces, cider, vinegar, and apple butter. When he was old enough to leave the home he went to the Allegheny Mountains and planted a small orchard. He ventured through the Pennsylvania Forest and continued to plant small orchards along his way. He befriended the pioneers and was a friend to the animals as well. Johnny soon became known as Johnny Appleseed because of the small orchards he planted all over the country. Storytellers always had a new tall tale about his survival in the wilderness. In March of 1845 Johnny became ill while trudging through a snowstorm and died a few days later. I would recommend this book because it teaches and informs us of a guy who was a great legend. He was known for planting many orchards and surviving in the wilderness. He was a brave man and who knows what our world would be like without him. ~ Katelyn Carson
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Johnny Appleseed is a legend who captures the imagination. Few books, however, exist on this man who has become almost a myth. I know, because after reading this book I tried to find a more in depth "grownup" book that would tell me more about this man. I couldn't find one. In the pursuit I've read internet accounts and other children's books, but nothing I've yet found is as comprehensive or alluring as this account of John Chapman's life.

Steven Kellogg does an amazing job incorporating facts and myth into a compelling story. His pictures are rich with detail and add to the mystique. The kid I nanny loves this book and all of the adventures that Johnny Appleseed went on.

I love this book enough that I gave it to a friend for her baby shower. I wanted her to discover the wonder of this man as she read it over and over again with her son.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I wanted a kind of frontier book that would take my listeners into the Ohio River Valley. I wanted one true to life, but also unusual to keep the children's interest.. The children had seen the Johnny Appleseed Tall Tale produced by Disney studios.This book explains who Johnny Appleseed was and why they called him that. The illustrations are well done and there are lots of them, which is what I want when reading to an audience of children. There are lots of small animals throughout.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I purchased this story to present a Common Core lesson to my first grade students. It has rich vocabulary and an engaging story. With my week long lesson, I found my students using vocabulary from the text in unique and appropriate ways. I also found that they recalled elements of this story throughout the year. - Shirley Anderson
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