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The Range Eternal Hardcover – October 1, 2002

6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Erdrich (The Birchbark House) skillfully weaves family memories into a poignant and lyrical story of home and hearth. The symbolism may be more moving to adults, but the theme of family and preservation will resonate with children. A young mother relates how when she was a girl in the Turtle Mountains, a wood-burning, enameled stove ("The Range Eternal" emblazoned on the front) provided the family with good soup, warmth and protection. As she looks through the stove's window, the girl sees in its flames "pictures of long ago" that conjure up a range of another kind ("I saw the range of the buffalo... the wolf range and fox range.... I saw the Range Eternal." Johnson and Francher (New York's Bravest) suffuse their breathtaking paintings with light-buffalo and deer gallop in golden clouds across the landscape; in a later painting, the steam from a pot of soup curls through the afternoon sun as the young mother longs for a "center of true warmth" like that of her childhood. When she finds a stove just like her family's in an antique shop, she brings it home and teaches her son "to enter the pictures... to see... the living range restored." Erdrich skillfully works in homely details, crafting language both musical and evocative (the girl is "tucked into the stillness" on a winter night; the stove is the "warm heart of the house"). Sumptuous paintings of the plains and cozy domestic scenes combine with graceful language to describe the rituals that keep family and community together. Ages 4-7.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 4-In this evocative glimpse into the past, a narrator recalls the blue enamel stove of her childhood home in the mountains of North Dakota. Her mother cooks with one hand while feeding the fire with the other. A girl thaws herself by the stove after chores. Stones warmed in the stove keep feet cozy on winter nights; hot potatoes keep hands from freezing on winter walks to school. The stove offers more than heat. It provides light and comfort against night fears and casts shadows on the wall that turn into pictures of the plains long ago, thick with grazing buffalo. The raised lettering on the stove, The Range Eternal, provides an early writing lesson. Much is lost the year electricity comes down the road, and the enamel range is traded for an electric one. Years later, the nostalgic young woman finds The Range Eternal in an antique store and is able to bring her memories to life for her son and her husband. Dreamy illustrations in muted colors float across the pages with the texture of steam, wind, and shadows forming connections between past and present. This is a peaceful story of imagination, memories, and the ties among generations.
Susan Oliver, Tampa-Hillsborough Public Library System, FL
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 9 years
  • Grade Level: Kindergarten - 4
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion (October 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786802200
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786802203
  • Product Dimensions: 10.1 x 0.3 x 10.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.7 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #758,168 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Louise Erdrich is the author of twelve novels as well as volumes of poetry, children's books, and a memoir of early motherhood. Her debut novel, Love Medicine, won the National Book Critics Circle Award. The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse was a finalist for the National Book Award. Her most recent novel, The Plague of Doves, a New York Times bestseller, received the highest praise from Philip Roth, who wrote, "Louise Erdrich's imaginative freedom has reached its zenith--The Plague of Doves is her dazzling masterpiece." Louise Erdrich lives in Minnesota with her daughters and is the owner of Birchbark Books, a small independent bookstore.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Patricia Kramer on February 19, 2003
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The illustrations in this book are gorgeous! The pictures flow and fill out the story. Children will be drawn into every page. The book is a wonderful tale of family life, responsibilities and the value of tradition. I put it on my list to buy for my niece and nephew.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I ordered The Range Eternal from Amazon for my Grandson. He had read the book at the library and liked it so much that he wanted one to keep. His Mom said he asks her to read this book very often and can recite it from memory as she reads. I plan to order this wonderful book for my granddaughter. I think this is a wonderful book for children.
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By Rudy Gardea on January 15, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Beautiful story and wonderful illustrations by the same illustrator that gave you Salamander Room. Steve Johnson needs to be producing as many books as he can because his gift is huge. Special illustrator.
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