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The Lonely Book Hardcover – April 24, 2012

4.8 out of 5 stars 30 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

KATE BERNHEIMER is the author of the picture book The Girl in the Castle Inside the Museum, a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year. Her most recent books for adults are Horse, Flower, Bird, a collection of stories, and The Complete Tales of Lucy Gold, the third novel in a fairy-tale trilogy. She is the editor of the 2010 World Fantasy Award winning My Mother She Killed Me, My Father He Ate Me: Forty New Fairy Tales and the essay collections Mirror, Mirror on the Wall: Women Writers Explore Their Favorite Fairy Tales and Brothers and Beasts: An Anthology of Men in Fairy Tales. Visit her at katebernheimer.com

CHRIS SHEBAN is best-known for his luminous jacket art for Kate DiCamillo's acclaimed novel, Because of Winn Dixie.  He is also the illustrator of many picture books, including Catching the Moon by the bestselling novelist of Bee Season, Myla Goldberg, and A Night on the Range by Aaron Frisch. He's been awarded three Gold and three Silver Medals from the Society of Illustrators. Visit him at ChrisSheban.com.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Schwartz & Wade (April 24, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375862269
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375862267
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 0.4 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #436,951 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In a day and age of electronic media, what a refreshing and heartfelt story about the connection that a child can have with a real book! It is very special to have a story that can be read to, and with, a child or grandchild, that captures the enchantment and magic of reading and libraries. This is a rare and magical book. Of our time and of times past. Quite a feat.
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Format: Hardcover
What a beautiful book and what a beautiful story. In this day and age of electronic media, a wonderful reminder of how important a printed book can be, of how we can have a relationship with a book, of how reading a story - and looking at pictures - over and over again can be a meaningful and important experience. I recommend The Lonely Book not just for children but for their parents too.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I purchased The Lonely Book for my young grandson, who has been going to the library since he was 2 1/2 years old.

He is a sensitive 'lil guy and has many feelings for stories and their characters, enjoys making analogies when reading, etc., and this book would address all of those things.

The book was recommended for a year younger than his nine years, but...for 3 years, when preparing for book reports at school, he has stated many times that he wants to be a children's book illustrator. In fact, that was his choice when his class had career week. He had to place items in a box that served as clues when questions were asked by the other children. He used fabric paint on an natural colored apron and wrote a book title on the apron and lots of smudges with the fabric paint, a pouch of colored pencils, and a sketchbook. No one guessed!

I thought the illustrations in The Lonely Book were different to many of his books, and the story would spark many feelings. He has enjoyed it so very much that I am glad I made the selection. He has read it several times to the 5 year old sister.
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Format: Hardcover
When the book first arrives at a library, it gets lots of attention, shuttling between children's homes and the shelf where the newest books are kept. After a while, the book joins other well-loved selections in the children's area. It's still taken home frequently and is happy.

But as the years pass, the book becomes old and worn. Children stop checking it out, and the book becomes lonely. One day, a little girl named Alice finds the book and begs to take it home. The book is read six nights in a row and even gets taken to Alice's show-and-tell. After a week, the book returns to the library and accidentally sent to the Book Sale.

Alice misses the book and looks for it each Saturday, but it's nowhere to be found. Over time, Alice moves on to other books, and the book grows lonelier and lonelier. Then comes the day of the Book Sale and the book and Alice are reunited forever. Alice doesn't mind that the book is worn or that the last page is missing. She knows just what it says, "And they lived happily ever after."

"The Lonely Book" is a delightful idea. It really makes one think about the lives books in the library lead. It's beautifully illustrated with the soft feel to it that feels as homey and comfortable as a treasured book. The story, however, is quite long, and might be hard for beginning readers to sit through. I would suggest it for children who have longer attention spans. That aside, it's a sweet picture book that's a refreshing change from all the bells and whistles surrounding us these days.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Lonely Book is ideal for book-loving adults to share with book-loving children. Other reviewers have covered the plot; I want to convey some of the emotion.

In one of many understated moments, "For six nights in a row, Alice's father read her the book at bedtime, and then after her light was turned out she would read it herself by the light of the moon." The gentle illustration of the father reading to his child brings back memories of my father reading to me and of my husband reading to our daughters...and expectations of my sons-in-law reading to their children in the near future.

Book-loving families will understand and love this book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is one of the most beautiful modern children's book I have ever read. Call me sentimental, but it made me cry the first few times I read it to my son. This is not only for parents and kids, but for people who love books. I think there's a real trend in nostalgia for the printed word. You can read about it here: [...]
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Format: Hardcover
I love the way my three-year-old picks books at the library. She runs at a break-neck pace, pulling anything that looks interesting or has substance (and by "substance" I don't mean it in the metaphorical way, I mean in the "it has mass and can be picked up" sort of way) off shelves and plopping them in the basket below the stroller. I rarely even see what the titles are before we get home. Limiting her to ten books or less is often impossible.

Many of these "choices" result in myself being required to read aloud boring or uninteresting or inane stories (or sets of words and phrases that appear between two covers but cannot, with any truthfulness, be called a "story") over and over again.

Some few, however, result in rare gems. After a trip to the library last week, I have had to make an addition to my list of "all-time favorite children's books."
Joining ranks with the likes of "The Polar Express," "The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey," "Ben and the Porcupine," "William and Grandpa," "Arabella," "Stopping By Woods," "A Child's Book of Poetry," and "Owl Moon" comes: "The Lonely Book" by Kate Bernheimer, illustrated by Chris Sheban.

It's new, (2012), and it is fabulous. If you have a young child I highly recommend getting a copy and reading it to them. But I warn you, if you are a lover of books; if books have often been your best friends, if some of your favorite memories are ones of your parents reading out loud to you when you were young, and if you've ever stayed up late re-reading a favorite book, or slept with a favorite book under your pillow... then you might want to keep a box of tissues nearby! My almost-four-year-old was a little perplexed by my inability to read past the catch in my throat a few times during the story.
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