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Tomie dePaola's Mother Goose Hardcover – October 2, 1985

4.7 out of 5 stars 38 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

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Eric Carle and Tomie dePaola: Author One-on-One

Eric Carle is the creator, author, and illustrator of The Very Hungry Caterpillar and many other children’s books. Tomie dePaola is the author and illustrator of Strega Nona: Her Story and countless other books. They recently had a conversation about their careers as picture book authors. Eric Carle

Tomie dePaola: When I was only four years old, I announced to my family in particular and to the world in general that I was going to become an artist, and write stories and draw pictures for books. I never swayed from that early declaration. I’ve always been curious to know, what inspired you to become a creator and illustrator of picture books?

Eric Carle: My career began as a graphic designer and for a number of years I worked as an art director for an advertising agency in New York. In the mid 1960's Bill Martin, Jr. saw an ad of a red lobster that I had designed and asked me to illustrate his Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? Well, I was set on fire! I was so inspired by this book, and the opportunity to illustrate it changed my life. After that, I started to create my own books, both words and pictures, and really it was then that I had found my true course in life.

Now, I have a question for you, Tomie. How would you describe your artistic style, and has it changed over time?

Tomie dePaola: My illustration style is heavily influenced by folk art--strong simple shapes, bold lines, color, color, color and a deceptive simplicity. My style began to develop early in art school, and through the years, it hasn’t changed very much, but it has refined itself. How would you describe yours?

Eric Carle: My aim with my work is to simplify and refine, be logical and harmonious. I like to use simple shapes, bright colors and a lot of white space. I write for the child inside of me. That is always where I begin.

Tomie dePaola Tomie dePaola: I do, as well. The only audience I keep in mind is that four-year-old in me. People sometimes ask me what advice I would give to young artists. I always think of the wonderful advice I received from my twin cousins when they were in art school in the late '30s. They told me, “Practice, practice, practice and don’t copy.”

Eric Carle: I often tell people about the four magic letters: DO IT. I want to be encouraging but I can only offer the example of my own experience, which is just one approach. There are many wonderful artists to learn about, which is important. But you must use your own imagination. You have to just do it.

Tomie dePaola: How do you feel knowing that a copy of The Very Hungry Caterpillar is sold every 30 seconds, somewhere in the world?

Eric Carle: It is hard for me, maybe for others too, to grasp this concept. But I am truly honored that my story is enjoyed by so many and that it is now being shared by a generation of parents who grew up with my book. How about your Strega Nona. She is one of your most popular characters. Can you share how she came to be?

Tomie dePaola: In the ‘70s when I was teaching at a college, we were required to attend faculty meetings. I always sat in the back with a yellow legal pad. Everyone thought I was taking notes. At one meeting a doodle appeared of a little lady with a big nose and a big chin. I named her Strega Nona, and the rest is history. Speaking of history, how will you be celebrating the third annual Very Hungry Caterpillar Day this year?

Eric Carle: On The Very Hungry Caterpillar Day, March 20th, I will probably be at home with my wife, Bobbie (I am a bit of a hermit, actually). But I will be saying a little toast to the caterpillar for whom I have a special place in my heart. And speaking of holidays, isn’t your favorite holiday Christmas. Do you have a special Christmas memory?

Tomie dePaola: Christmas is my favorite holiday. My favorite Christmas was the one when I received tons and tons of art supplies: everything from an easel to paints, pads and pads of paper, and “how to draw” books.

About the Author

Tomie dePaola was born in Meriden, Connecticut, in 1934 to a family of Irish and Italian background. By the time he could hold a pencil, he knew what his life's work would be. His determination to create books for children led to a BFA from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York, and an MFA from the California College of Arts & Crafts in Oakland, California.

It drove him through the years of teaching, designing greeting cards and stage sets, and painting church murals until 1965, when he illustrated his first children's book, Sound, by Lisa Miller for Coward-McCann. Eventually, freed of other obligations, he plunged full time into both writing and illustrating children's books.

He names Fra Angelico and Giotto, Georges Rouault, and Ben Shahn as major influences on his work, but he soon found his own unique style. His particular way with color, line, detail, and design have earned him many of the most prestigious awards in his field, among them a Caldecott Honor Award for Strega Nona, the Smithsonian Medal from the Smithsonian Institution, the Kerlan Award from the University of Minnesota for his "singular attainment in children's literature," the Catholic Library Association's Regina Medal for his "continued distinguished contribution," and the University of Southern Mississippi Medallion. He was also the 1990 United States nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Medal for illustration.

Tomie dePaola has published almost 200 children's books in fifteen different countries. He remains one of the most popular creators of books for children, receiving more than 100,000 fan letters each year.

Tomie lives in an interesting house in New Hampshire with his four dogs. His studio is in a large renovated 200-year-old barn.

- He has been published for over 30 years.
- Over 5 million copies of his books have sold worldwide.
- His books have been published in over 15 different countries.
- He receives nearly 100,000 fan letters each year.

Tomie dePaola has received virtually every significant recognition forhis books in the children's book world, including:

- Caldecott Honor Award from American Library Association
- Newbery Honor Award from American Library Association
- Smithson Medal from Smithsonian Institution
- USA nominee in illustration for Hans Christian Andersen Medal
- Regina Medal from Catholic Library Association

copyright © 2000 by Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers. All rights reserved.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Lexile Measure: NP (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers (October 2, 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399212582
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399212581
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 0.6 x 11.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #269,603 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

"Tomie dePaola was born in Meriden, Connecticut, in 1934 to a family of Irish and Italian background. By the time he could hold a pencil, he knew what his life's work would be. His determination to create books for children led to a BFA from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York, and an MFA from the California College of Arts & Crafts in Oakland, California.
It drove him through the years of teaching, designing greeting cards and stage sets, and painting church murals until 1965, when he illustrated his first children's book, Sound, by Lisa Miller for Coward-McCann. Eventually, freed of other obligations, he plunged full time into both writing and illustrating children's books.
He names Fra Angelico and Giotto, Georges Rouault, and Ben Shahn as major influences on his work, but he soon found his own unique style. His particular way with color, line, detail, and design have earned him many of the most prestigious awards in his field, among them a Caldecott Honor Award for Strega Nona, the Smithsonian Medal from the Smithsonian Institution, the Kerlan Award from the University of Minnesota for his ""singular attainment in children's literature,"" the Catholic Library Association's Regina Medal for his ""continued distinguished contribution,"" and the University of Southern Mississippi Medallion. He was also the 1990 United States nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Medal for illustration.
Tomie dePaola has published almost 200 children's books in fifteen different countries. He remains one of the most popular creators of books for children, receiving more than 100,000 fan letters each year.
Tomie lives in an interesting house in New Hampshire with his four dogs. His studio is in a large renovated 200-year-old barn.
- He has been published for over 30 years.
- Over 5 million copies of his books have sold worldwide.
- His books have been published in over 15 different countries.
- He receives nearly 100,000 fan letters each year.
Tomie dePaola has received virtually every significant recognition for his books in the children's book world, including:
- Caldecott Honor Award from American Library Association
- Newbery Honor Award from American Library Association
- Smithson Medal from Smithsonian Institution
- USA nominee in illustration for Hans Christian Andersen Medal
- Regina Medal from Catholic Library Association

"

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This book includes items that I remember (and/or own) as separate Golden Book stories; an example is the Three Little Kittens. Other items I know as folk songs e.g. "I had a cat and the cat pleased me". Others have longer versions than normally appear in Mother Goose although the additional verses are often traditional e.g. Jack and Jill; this trait is the one most apt to disturb the adults - they often wish to read the rhymes as they remember them. I would also expect some complaints about some of the violence - spanking etc.; I see these as an opportunity to introduce the child to the fact that the world is not composed of perfect people. Letting children hear or see something is not the same as approving the behavior.
The real strength of this volume is the thought given to sequence. Open to any page and you will see pictures which are compatible with each other, rhymes that are compatible, that create a nice flow. The illustrations are a wonderful mix of realism, animal-people, and humor - a pig so puffed it appears to float. While the pictures have a taste of old to them - especially those accompanying rhymes with archaic subject matter - the pictures are appealing to the contemporary child.
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Format: Hardcover
Based wherever possible on the classic rhymes as collected by Peter and Iona Opie, dePaola opens his own collection with the tale of Old Mother Goose and her hapless son Jack. Thereafter, longer tentpole tales are spaced regularly throughout, separated from one another by shorter stories, with some taking up a page with text and illustration while other tiny verses are arranged several to a page, sometimes spanning openings with similarly-themed illustrations. dePaola's illustrations are filled with simple, muted hues with a distinct lack of shadow which, in combination with a use of line, promotes the human scale of the narratives -- fuzzy even at its sharpest -- and creates an atmosphere of gentleness which would seem to suit the familiar and often archaic lines even when they veer into the horrific. The young reader will be drawn in by the friendly, engaging, and expressive images, and is likely to construct expectations of the stories before beginning to read them. However, reading from Mother Goose may prove challenging despite the simple diction and rhyming structure due to the frequent use of approximate rhymes and dated cultural references. Nonetheless, the collection fittingly concludes with a series of time-honored lullabies.
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By A Customer on February 6, 1999
Format: Hardcover
My two-year-old daughter can't go to bed without reading at least 20 nursery rhymes from this enchanting book. (Well, I read them to her.) The illustrations are magnificent, as are the groupings of the rhymes and the way the art is arranged. This is truly a magical book. The only thing I don't like is the true, old wording on some of the "crueller" rhymes; in other words, the old lady in the shoe beats her children soundly, and the mother who catches her daughter warming her toes by the fire also beats her. Etc. I change the words for all these. Other than this, a magnficent, classic book that has my child loving the sound of words.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I purchased this for a baby shower gift (everyone brought their favorite childhood book). It's perfect! The illustrations are priceless and the future mother is from Tomie dePaola's hometown- Meriden- and the book is dedicated to Meriden. It includes a frameable illustration as well- just right for baby's room.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
** Be careful when you order this book. If you are ordering from the market place, make sure this version is what you are getting. There is another version that is abridged and is only 40 pages as opposed to the original 128 pages. The Cheaply made copy of this book has a small circle in the bottom right corner that that says Dolly Parton Imagination Library. Sadly, I started my search with this version but ended up receiving the other! Wish I had known! The original is 5 stars!
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Format: Hardcover
What could be better than Tomie dePaola and Mother Goose? As a teacher and parent, these rhymes are a must to ensure reading success for our children. There are too many kids these days that don't know the nursery rhymes and then have difficulty rhyming themselves. I make it a point to give this as a gift for new babies. You should too!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a favorite book I've given many times as a gift to new parents. It has beautiful, colorful illustrations that are charming and pleasing to the eye, perfect for sitting in a rocking chair and reading with a baby or small child to inspire a lifetime love of books and stories.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is filled with nursery rhymes - old favorites and some you've probably never heard of. The graphics by Tomie dePaola are beautiful; lush, colorful and sure to enchant young and old alike. Of all the "Mother Goose" books I've seen, this one has the broadest assortment of rhymes and definitely the most beautiful art. It is my favorite "new baby" gift and is a wonderful way to introduce the beauty of art and words to little ones.
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