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Right Here On This Spot Hardcover – September 27, 1999


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Kindergarten - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 410L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers; Library Binding edition (September 27, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0395730910
  • ISBN-13: 978-0395730911
  • Product Dimensions: 10.2 x 0.1 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #400,892 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this lyrical homage to humankind's relationship to the land, "this spot" is the farm belonging to the narrator's grandfather, and as Grandpa digs a ditch, he discovers clues to its past. The story of the land begins with the Paleo-Indians of the Ice Age: "Indians in ancient times/ lit a campfire/ on a glacial beach." In Addy's (A Visit with Great-Grandma) stately text, spare language evokes the changes of seasons and of centuries, and sets the stage for the artifacts Grandpa uncovers: a mastodon bone, old Indian arrowheads and a button from a Civil War uniform. Clapp, who exhibited his talent for realistic landscapes with mystical qualities in The Stone Fey, here juxtaposes a realistic painting of Grandpa driving his tractor over the fields with a haunting portrait of the Indians, their faces aglow by firelight, sitting under a full moon. This illustration provides a graceful transition to the next spread of a luminous moon that "rose and set,/ over and over./ Season followed season." Together, text and art smoothly convey the passage of time in this specific area near the southwestern tip of Lake Michigan and chronicle its progression from glacial beach to Civil War battleground to what is now patchwork farmland. Readers never see the child narrator, though the grandfather and grandmother have cameo appearances; the effect of these predominantly unpopulated landscapes creates a feeling of reverence for the book's real main characterAthe land itself. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 2-Following a picture of an elderly man on his tractor, a straightforward text explains how the Paleo-Indians of the Ice Age once lived where his farm stands today. Subsequent pages portray the melting of the glacier and the growth of forest and farmland. Seasons pass; other Indians, then settlers, then a soldier in the Civil War walk the land until readers are ultimately brought to the present day, where Grandpa unearths an old button, arrowheads, and a bone. Grandma arranges for specialists to examine the archaeological treasures found "right here on this spot...." Clapp's watercolor-and-pencil illustrations depict the land's progression with a gorgeous realism. This concept book is a useful introduction to the rudiments of archaeology, but it does not have the child appeal of George Ella Lyon's Who Came Down That Road? (Orchard, 1996). The beginning offers no intriguing catalyst for the lengthy discussion of geological and historical changes that follows. Children will need an adult to interest them in this one.
Jackie Hechtkopf, University of Maryland, College Park
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ann Angel on August 22, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This award winning look at the past, winner of the Archer/Eckbald Children's Picture Book Award, is a touching look at the history of place. It was recently selected for Outstanding Achievement in Children's Literature by the Children's Book Award Committee of the Wisconsin Library Association.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Catherine S. Vodrey on July 19, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I truly wish that Sharon Hart Addy's "Right Here on This Spot" had reached a wider audience, as it deserves greater attention. Addy takes the intriguing question of "What happened right here on this spot--last week, last year, a million years ago?" and turns it into a meditation on change, time, loss, and more. She goes from pre-human history to native Americans hunting to pioneers to Civil War soldiers, all planting them firmly in the exact same spot, living their lives out, leaving their fragments of history for future generations to find.
Addy's tale is more than matched by the breathtaking illustrations of artist John Clapp. Clapp, who teaches illustration at San Jose State University, has done a superlative job of giving larger life to the text without overpowering it. His illustrations are not only incredibly realistic and beautiful, but they transcend their medium by having an almost emotive quality. You almost hold your breath to see the Civil War soldier waving goodbye from a field.
I can't recommend "Right Here on This Spot" highly enough, and hope that reading this review will spur more readers to purchase it. It will become a much-loved favorite in your family, too.
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