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Woolbur Hardcover – January 2, 2008

4.9 out of 5 stars 64 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Leslie Helakoski is the author of The Smushy Bus and Big Chickens, a Junior Library Guild selection. Born and raised near New Orleans, Leslie Helakoski received a degree in advertising from the University of Louisiana and one in illustration from Northern Michigan University. She now lives in Lawton, Michigan, with her family.



Lee Harper is an artist, teacher, and storyteller. Looking for the Easy Life is his fourth picture book. Lee also illustrated woolbur, by Leslie Helakoski, with "lumpy, expressive ovines, especially the wild-wooled Woolbur," that brought the "delightful tale of independence to life" (Kirkus Reviews); Turkey Trouble, by Wendi Silvano; and Snow! Snow! Snow!, the first book he both wrote and illustrated. Lee lives in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, with his family.

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Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series, and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. Pre-order the official script book today. Kindle | Hardcover

Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Lexile Measure: AD270L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (January 2, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060847263
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060847265
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.2 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #69,713 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
When you grow up as the daughter of a fiber artist (spinning, knitting, weaving, etc.) there are certain things you learn about wool. You know how the tiny fibers hook into one another, making them easy to spin. You know the difference between a gossip wheel and a walking wheel. And when your mother also works in a small bookstore you learn which children's illustrators also know their wool. Jan Brett probably does, due to the fact that you can make out every tiny stitch on the sweaters she draws. Almost every person who has ever illustrated the story of Sleeping Beauty does NOT understand (wool on a distaff? SERIOUSLY, people!). Paul O. Zelinsky does understand (notice that in his version of Rumpelstiltskin the bobbins on the spinning wheel fill with gold thread). And now we have illustrator Lee Harper. Lee Harper is the kind of artist who goes the extra mile. A guy who'll learn about wool, study it, subscribe to "Fiber Arts Magazine", (this is true) and then lovingly illustrate a picture book like "Woolbur" to the best of his abilities. Ostensibly the story of a little sheep that is a "free spirit" (their words, not mine) the book is an extremely palatable tale of sheep, wool, and finding a way to follow the rules without compromising your beliefs. It also stays true to the nature of wool. Pretty complex stuff for a book that's only 32 pages long.

Basically, Maa and Paa would have preferred a conformist. What they got instead was Woolbur. Woolbur is a sheep that has his own way of doing things. While all the others card the wool set before them, Woolbur cards the wool that's still on his body. If others are spinning wool in front of a spinning wheel, he's riding it.
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Format: Hardcover
Woolbur is a wonderful children's book that shows it's not only ok to be different, but it sure is a lot of fun. Knitters and spinners alike will enjoy sharing this story with their children and grandchildren.
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Format: Hardcover
Woolbur was a little lamb whose fleece was white as snow...until, of course, he decided to dye himself a bright, snappy blue:

"You look unbelievable!" said Paa.

"I know," said Woolbur. "Isn't it great?"

"It will never wash out!" said Maa.

"I know, " said Woolbur. "Isn't it great?"

Whether he's carding, spinning, or weaving, Woolbur's uncoventional approach to wool causes his nervous parents to pull their own wool at night, waiting for the day when Woolbur will finally follow the flock. "It's what we sheep do," say Maa and Paa, begging him to change his ways.

But Woolbur's spirited individuality can't be sheared, and before long he has the rest of the flock following him. Woolbur is the perfect yarn to share with kids who dare to be different, as well as those who need a nudge to let their own light shine. Go Woolbur!
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Format: Hardcover
This is a wonderful read aloud book. A kid pleaser that adults can enjoy as well. Most of all I love the illustrations, I'd recommend buying this book for the illustrations alone. It is icing on the cake that the story is good too.
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Format: Hardcover
Woolbur is a celebration of individuality, great for all ages, but my first-grader is especially enjoying Lee Harper's charming, detailed illustrations. Leslie Helakowsi and Harper have done a lovely job marrying words to images, and Woolbur's yogic Grandpaa is memorable, wise, and kind. While Woolbur's parents become anxious each night about his unwillingness to stick with the herd, Grandpaa calmly chants "Don't worry." I love the little details, like along with with an airplane and other toys littering Woolbur's bedroom floor is a book, "Zen Knitting." Woolbur gleefullyWoolbur dyes himself blue and gets into all kinds of un-sheep-like adventures, and the conclusion brings a message all kids and adults need to hear.
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Format: Hardcover
This is a really sweet book and a story everyone can relate to. When Woolbur's parents tell him he needs to change his ways and he thinks and thinks and thinks about it - and then decides to bring everyone into HIS world, it is such a great moment, you want to cheer "good for you". We've all been there. It's not easy to find the courage to embrace who we are. A nice subtle lesson for kids and grown up alike! And really beautiful, engaging illustrations. Woolbur is pretty darn cute!
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Format: Hardcover
Woolbur begins when Maa tells Paa that Woolbur decided to run with the dogs, instead of standing still with the sheep. When Maa and Paa express their concern that those dogs will run circles around him. Woolbur replies, "I know, isn't it great!"

Then Woolbur has a little trouble in the shearing barn, when he decides not to be sheared like the other sheep. Once again, Maa and Paa tell him that it's springtime and that his wool is so long. And again Woolbur replies, "I know, isn't it great!"

The story continues with Woolbur doing things his own way when it comes time for the sheep to card their wool, spin it and weave it. In one of his bolder moves, he weaves his forelock in the loom. All the while, loving every minute of it. Finally Maa and Paa sit him down and tell him that he must follow the flock, because it's what sheep do. They tell him he has to shear, card, spin, dye and weave wool like everyone else.

So Woolbur thinks about this all night long, and comes up with a plan.

His solution is to teach all the other sheep to run with the dogs, to let their wool grow, to card their own wool, to spin crazy yarn, to experiment with color and to weave their own forelocks. Soon all of the other sheep are acting just like Woolbur. Although even as the other sheep follow him, he still manages to be one of a kind. Woolbur is a great book for kids who march to their own beat (and for those who tend to stay with the flock).

The illustrations in Woolbur are accessible, funny and sure to draw kids in. These sheep are not just ordinary sheep; they have personalities. Even the ones in the flock, who tend to stay in the background, have lots of detail.
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