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The House on Dirty-Third Street Hardcover – March 1, 2012


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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Here's a book promoting faith in a light-handed, even practical way without sacrificing one bit of its inspirational power...A low-key, heartening effort that will ring true to many." ?Booklist
"...A tale of generosity, faith and friendship. Share it quietly within and with others." ?Kirkus Reviews
"...The artwork in this story is amazing. While the whole book is done in beautiful watercolors, when the book begins we see grays, dark blues, tans and washed-out yellows. But as the story progresses, the colors soon change to bright yellows, bright blues, greens and reds...The message of the book is also shown through the changes in the coloration as the little girl's faith in her fellow man is brought to life by the help of neighbors and new friends from church." ?Krazy Karyn's Books blog
"...The art in this book is amazing! Done with watercolors or maybe diluted inks (from what I can tell) in a semi-realistic style, it compliments the story perfectly. The colors start out muted and washed-out, much like the story itself, and slowly become more and more vibrant reflecting the mood and changes in the emotions of the characters until the last page where we see the once rundown and sad house transformed and full of color." ?Paper Dreams blog

About the Author

Jo S. Kittinger is a graduate of the University of Montevallo and the author of a number of children s books.
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Product Details

  • Lexile Measure: 600L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Peachtree Publishers (March 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1561456195
  • ISBN-13: 978-1561456192
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 11 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #452,362 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jo's love of nature is evident in many of her books, examining everything from blue jays to blue sapphires. Bits of her personal life pop up in books as well. MOVING DAY was written in a rental truck as she drove her son to college, stirring up her own memories of moving often as a child. And THE JOY OF CATS speaks to her love of animals, especially the feline kind.

Jo S. Kittinger, a Florida native now living in Birmingham, AL, is the author of more than a 25 books, including picture books, middle grade non-fiction, and both fiction and non-fiction easy readers. THE HOUSE ON DIRTY-THIRD STREET, A BREATH OF HOPE and ROSA'S BUS: THE RIDE TO CIVIL RIGHTS are three recent picture books. ROSA'S BUS was voted to review a Crystal Kite award. In addition, Jo has published numerous items in various books, magazines, educational materials and newspapers.

Jo's passion for books started early--she was an avid reader growing up. Her editorial experience began as the editor of her high-school yearbook. Later she worked as an editorial assistant at The Flicker children's magazine, often wading through the slush pile of submissions.

Jo graduated summa cum laude from the University of Montevallo in Alabama, with a BFA in Fine Arts and a minor in biology. She worked as a potter and fine crafts gallery owner until her first child was born. Jo's first publications were original crafts projects in books such as Christmas With Southern Living and Christmas is Coming! Choosing to stay home with her children, Jo turned to writing full time and published her first book, DEAD LOG ALIVE! with Franklin Watts Publishers in 1996.

Currently Jo serves as a regional advisor for the Southern Breeze region (AL, MS, GA) of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, where she organizes two conferences for writers and illustrators of children's literature each year. She enjoys making author talks at schools, libraries and conferences.


Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
[This review also appears on Andi's Kids Books.]

The House on Dirty-Third Street by Jo S. Kittinger, illustrated by Thomas Gonzalez, is the story of a young girl and her mom who move to a rundown house on Thirty-Third Street. The entire neighborhood appears somewhat rundown, but theirs is the worst. Her mom tells her to just look at it through the eyes of faith. The two start to dig away at preparing their new house to fit their dreams and quickly feel defeated. When they go to the new church, the girl asks her Sunday School teacher to pray for them, so that they could see their home with the eyes of faith. Almost immediately, people from the church and the neighborhood start to show up to offer their assistance. Working together, the house that they had seen through their eyes of faith becomes a reality.

I love this book. I also live in an older neighborhood where houses seem to constantly need some kind of attention. Like the neighborhood in the book, we are a community that does whatever we can to help each other. You know that if you need help with anything, you can reach out to the neighbors and get what you need. We're all here to live our lives in a beautiful neighborhood. It reflects on us as people and we take pride in where we live.

Sometimes it isn't easy to see the beauty in your home and life. The old saying goes, "When life hands you lemons, you need to make lemonade." Make the best of what you are given and it will become better than you had imagined. I like the line in this book about looking at the home through the eyes of faith. If you have faith in something, you can make it happen. It isn't always going to come without some hard work, but it will come.
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Format: Hardcover
When circumstances necessitate starting over, a mother and daughter purchase a falling-down house, which the mother believes is perfect because they can afford it. But soon they find themselves feeling isolated and defeated. Longing for their old neighborhood and friends, and overwhelmed by the repairs their new house needs, they finally realize they can't do everything alone--the only way to make things better is to ask for help. They both learn that when you reach out to the community, people answer with kindness. As the house gets rebuilt, so does their sense of hope and belonging.

A single mother and daughter need to move from their old neighborhood to a new house that cost less. They move to Thirty-Third Street. The daughter renames this Dirty-Third Street because all the houses look old and run down. Mom tells her the house is perfect, because we can afford it. To the daughter, the house just gets worse when she must empty it of trash before she can actually move her things in. They work hard on the house, until even mom gets discouraged and can no longer see through eyes of faith.

The daughter noticed a church, not far from the house, when they drove in. The next day, Sunday, they attend services at this neighborhood church. A call for prayer requests goes out and the daughter answers. She gives a short version of their current situation and asks for prayers that everything work out. Will the daughter's prayer request receive prayers? Will those prayers be answered?

This is an interesting story. What I mean is, The House on Dirty-Third Street is told without ever giving an actual name to mom or her daughter. Any child, or adult, can read this, picturing themselves as the characters and claim the story as their own.
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Format: Hardcover
What a fabulous book! A mother has purchased a home in what appears to be a run down neighborhood. Through the eyes of faith she can picture how this house can look and besides that, it is all they can afford. The first weekend of cleaning though brings on some doubts as both her and her daughter realize how dirty and in need of repair the house actually is.

As they begin to pile the trash up on the curb for the man they have hired to take to the dump, they spot the neighbor across the street and ask her if she has anything she would like to add to the pile. Lesson here - to make a friend, you sometimes have to reach out in friendship first!

Missing their friends and old neighborhood, the daughter makes the suggestion that they go to the church down the street. Read on to see how the story develops and true friendships are made plus how the house comes to life.

The artwork in this book "speaks". Starting off very monotone with just a hint of color, it gradually changes to full color by the time the book ends. This really is a GREAT book and one I HIGHLY recommend. Children (and adults) need to read more like this.
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Format: Hardcover
When a young girl and her mother make a new start in life at Thirty-Third Street, the young girl did not imagine they would be moving into a run-down house, but it is all her mother can afford at the time. The girl is so disappointed with their new 'home', she calls it the house on 'dirty-third street'. Her mother tries to lift her spirits by persuading the young girl to look at it "through eyes of faith."

Over a period of time, the task of remodeling the house gets so overwhelming that it is the mother whose spirits start to flag. Now, the daughter must lift her mother's spirits, and she manages to get the community to get together and help them out. The story is a simple one but has a great impact on readers - it is a timely reminder that much can be achieved with a strong sense of community. The illustrations are amazing and add vivid details to the story. This book can be used to start a meaningful discussion about the importance of faith and community.
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