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The Cloud Spinner Hardcover – March 13, 2012
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Starred Review, Kirkus Reviews, January 1, 2012:
“There are definitely lessons about taking only what you need, about care for the needs of others and about listening to what is unsaid, but they are fully inside the story and only add to the pleasure.”
Top Customer Reviews
It begins, "There was once a boy who could weave cloth from the clouds. He had a spinning wheel and a loom on top of a hill. As the clouds p[assed, with a whir of the wheel, he would spin them into thread; gold in the morning with the rising sun, white in the afternoon,and crimson in the evening".
The boy, taught well by his mother, "Enough is enough and not one stitch more", is a paragon of quiet wisdom. In this timeless tale he encounters a vain and boastful king whose greed disrupts the balance of everything. The intervention of a brave, resourceful princess rescues the kingdom from impending disaster.
She does so by asking the urgent question, "Is it too late to undo what has been done?"
Masterful illustration by Alison Jay complements the text in weaving this magical modern parable.
Our little one loves this story-- the illustrations are detailed and the story provides plenty of memorable lines. Fantastic children's book that is modern but with the charm and pacing of a classic.
Truly a lovely story. It's one that I'll be picking off the shelf in hopes that my 4yo will want to hear it. He's asked for it multiple times already after just having it a day or two, so it seems to appeal to both adults and children. The messages are subtle and incorporated into the story, rather than feeling heavy handed, but give a great opening for talking about greed and being happy with enough.
As always, Alison Jay's illustrations are a treat. She always has so many exquisite little details that one can see new things after a dozen reads.
Released as Cloth from the Clouds in Britain, this story has a universal appeal for both boys and girls, and works beautifully for a read-aloud. Catchpool employs the stricture from the story, using just enough words to convey the story and "not one [word] more." Further, he understands the need for key (non-annoying) repetitive phases that keep the story anchored, and delivers his message of conservation in a gentle but effective manner. Brilliantly done.
The only book we've read previously by Michael Catchpool is his Where There's a Bear, There's Trouble!, which was (and still is) universally adored by all three of my girls as toddlers. (Susanna, at five, still loves it and I still see the older two pulling it out of the bookshelf to read themselves on occasion.)
Alison Jay's deceptively simple, gorgeous folk art illustrations pair perfectly with this story. The colors are so beautiful. My children delighted in the cloud shapes and the smiling hills. (See the one on the cover?) I have loved her art since I first saw it on the original hardcovers of Shannon Hale's Bayern series (...Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I love this book because it's a beautifully illustrated, sparely written parable about the need to live simply. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Carl Burnett
I love the moral of this story, my daughters love that there is a princess in it! It's a win-win!Published 17 months ago by MNMom
My cousin loved it just as much as her child! Wonderful childrens book with pretty picturesPublished 19 months ago by Britne
Great book teaching the importance of sustainability by way of a children's story.Published 20 months ago by ANON18
High atop a green hill sat a little boy and his spinning wheel. He possessed a rare gift to capture the passing clouds in his wheel and spin them into thread: golden from the... Read morePublished on August 6, 2014 by Lesley Dahlseng