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The Midsummer Tomte and the Little Rabbits: A Day-by-day Summer Story in Twenty-one Short Chapters Hardcover – May 15, 2016
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From School Library Journal
K-Gr 2—Grump the tomte feels lonely. The farm he protects has long been abandoned, and his friend the bumblebee has flown away. "I've been too friendly," he thinks. "I've not been grumpy enough. That's why I'm feeling sad. It's time to make a few changes." Changes are coming, but not the kind Grump expects. It starts with a rabbit family and their plans for a midsummer festival. Father longs for a chance to show off his hat, philosophical but forgetful Grandfather hopes to give speeches and write poems, and the others wish for dancing, food, love, and magic. When a great storm forces all the woodland animals to seek shelter at the tomte's farm, his carefully structured, solitary life is thrown into chaos. Interwoven through the plot is the story of Rory, a newcomer rabbit who captures the affections of young Binny and the ire of Father, who cannot forgive Rory for mistaking his beloved hat for a bucket for dandelion leaves. Translated from Swedish, Stark's tale, with its whimsical characters and engaging narrative tone, brings to mind Tove Jansson's "Moomin" books and A.A. Milne's "Winnie-the-Pooh" stories. The oversize format and delicate, expressive colored pencil illustrations give the work a timeless flair. VERDICT This selection's mix of childlike wonder and kernels of wisdom will appeal to child listeners and their adult readers, making it perfect for reading aloud at bedtime.—Suzanne Myers Harold, formerly at Multnomah County Library System, Portland, OR
'This follow-up to "The Yule Tomte and the Little Rabbits" is an enchanting story in twenty-one chapters, which can be read through June to conclude on Midsummer's Day. Ulf Stark masterfully weaves together drama and comedy to create a heartfelt and truly magical story. Award-winning illustrator Eva Eriksson brings the charming characters to life with delightful seasonal artwork.' --Global Literature in Libraries Initiative 'For a thoroughly enjoyable story about a tomte called Grump, who really isn't that way at all, join the fun of The Midsummer Tomte and the Little Rabbits by Ulf Stark and Eva Eriksson.' --Vermont Country Sampler 'The story itself is sweet and contains many life lessons as well as observations on the nature of living things, and the beautifully-colored illustrations capture its essence perfectly. This is the sort of story that should be handed down from one generation to the next, a literary gift filled with rewards in its telling.' --Goodreads 'Grump the tomte, a gnomelike fellow whose gruff exterior hides a kind heart, feels lonely after his friend the bumblebee flies off at the beginning of summer. Cleaning the farm cottage in his care, he also misses the family that moved away. When a violent storm leaves many woodland animals homeless, he takes them in and becomes like a second grandpa to a rabbit family, rescuing an injured hero among them and nursing him back to health. Midsummer Night brings romance into the rabbits' lives and, unexpectedly, into the tomte's as well. Written with a storyteller's finesse and illustrated with lively, beautiful pencil and watercolor artwork, this companion book to The Yule Tomte and the Little Rabbits (2014) offers another foray into the character's magical world. Children who loved Astrid Lindgren's Tomten picture books will be enchanted by this longer story based on the same traditional creature from Scandinavian folklore. For any child who is ready for longer stories but still enjoys the illustrations in picture books, here's a captivating read-aloud choice.' -- Booklist 'Award-winning illustrator Eva Eriksson continues to bring charming characters to life with delightful seasonal artwork. Simply stated, [this book] will prove to be an enduringly popular and highly prized addition to family, school, and community library collections for children ages 5 to 8.' -- Midwest Book Review 'The quality of the book's production is superb' --Wendy Axford, SLA 'Translated from Swedish, Stark's tale, with its whimsical characters and engaging narrative tone, brings to mind Tove Jansson's "Moomin" books and A.A. Milne's "Winnie-the-Pooh" stories. The oversize format and delicate, expressive colored pencil illustrations give the work a timeless flair. This selection's mix of childlike wonder and kernels of wisdom will appeal to child listeners and their adult readers, making it perfect for reading aloud at bedtime.' -- School Library Journal 'This is a sweet magic-filled fairytale with lovely pastoral illustrations. For children who like fairytales and animal stories, this is a good one to recommend and a lovely readaloud.' -- Youth Services Book Review 'Praise for The Yule Tomte and the Little Rabbits: 'Eva Eriksson's delicate renderings of Grump and the bunnies are a delight. Told in 25 chapters, this tale is certain to become a classic.' -- BookPage 'This one is a joy to read and to share with children... Stark bestows each of the main characters with vivid personalities, and Eriksson's depiction of Grump is particularly irresistible. It's filled with wonder and friendship.' -- Kirkus Reviews 'This book is unique in that it is a charming story and it is told in 25 short chapters, so you can read one a day for the entire month!' -- KidlitTV 'It's an old-fashioned type of illustrated story (with a picture-book trim size) that doesn't feel the least bit dated or sentimental.' -- The Horn Book Magazine 'It's the perfect storybook for families to share together, and children will enjoy the amusing illustrations, particularly of the animals with whom they will identify.' -- Kindling 'Simple drawings and many words make for an involved but fun read-aloud that holds enough adventure and interest to last for a number of nights.' -- Midwest Book Review 'This is a sweet magic-filled fairytale with lovely pastoral illustrations... For children who like fairytales and animal stories, this is a good one to recommend and a lovely readaloud.' -- Youth Services Book Review 'This wonderful picture book takes readers into a delightful woodland world where the rabbits and their friends, and a grumpy house tomte, live. Divided into short chapters, the story takes us into the lives of the characters, and we get to watch as they discover new things about love, magic, and friendship.' -- Through The Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews
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