Applesauce weather

Helen Frost, 1949-

Book - 2016

Preparing for her family's annual tradition of picking apples, making applesauce, and listening to her Uncle Arthur tell his tall tales, young Faith comforts her uncle, who has lost his zest for stories in the aftermath of losing his wife.

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Somerville, Massachusetts : Candlewick Press 2016.
Main Author
Helen Frost, 1949- (author)
Other Authors
Amy June Bates (illustrator)
First edition
Physical Description
103 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
Contents unavailable.
Review by New York Times Review

Plourde and Gal capture the vitality of fall right along with the season's more melancholy realities. Bella has outgrown her favorite coat. Her Grams wants to sew her a new one, but Bella's too busy playing in piles of leaves and picking apples. Not until the first snow appears, and with it a snow woman who can wear the old coat, will Bella let go. The pages fly by like autumn leaves in the wind: Bella is a whirl of messy, lovely girl-energy, while Grams is a warm, whiz-bang wonder of a grandmother. WONDERFALL Written and illustrated by Michael Hall. 40 pp. Greenwil low/ HarperCollins. $17.99. (Picture book; ages 3 to 7) In spare poems whose titles substitute "fall" for the endings of autumn-appropriate words like "beautiful," "resourceful" and "thankful," Hall ("Frankencrayon") pays punning homage to the season. ("Goodbye, geese," "Wistfall" begins.) His collages, which layer cutouts in bright colors mostly against white backgrounds in a style reminiscent of Eric Carle and Lois Ehlert, are reminders of the shapes within shapes that make up all we see. GOODBYE SUMMER, HELLO AUTUMN Written and illustrated by Kenard Pak. 32 pp. Holt. $17.99. (Picture book; ages 3 to 7) A jaunty girl in a red scarf hikes across the pages of this cheerful chronicle of the passage from summer to fall. As she greets flora and fauna, each explain themselves. "We are leaning into the sun, enjoying the last summer rays," the flowers say. "I am setting earlier and earlier now," the sun confides. But it's Pak's ("Flowers Are Calling") resplendent digital art that makes you linger. Each spread is a masterly landscape composition, both impressionistic and crisp, with colors that quietly dazzle. YELLOW TIME Written and illustrated by Lauren Stringer. 32 pp. Beach Lane. $17.99. (Picture book; ages 3 to 7) As colors go, yellow rarely gets to be the star of the show. Stringer ("Winter Is the Warmest Season") is out to change that in this vibrant celebration of the central role it plays in the autumn palette. A radiant cast of children climb, skip, jump and dance through scenes of yellow-colored fall pleasures. "It only comes once a year," these kids know, and they look as if they're having a blast while it's here. The pages are heavy on the yellow, of course, but pops of bright blue, red and purple add balance. APPLESAUCE WEATHER By Helen Frost. Illustrated by Amy June Bates. 103 pp. Candlewick, $14.99. (Middle grade; ages 8 to 12) Its fall setting makes a throwback tale like this one even more resonant. Frost expertly walks the line between sweet and bittersweet in short poems about the siblings Faith and Peter, who await a visit from Uncle Arthur. He always comes to make applesauce, but this year Aunt Lucy died; maybe he won't. Frost pays tribute to older family members, the lives they lived and the stories they tell, which can still enthrall the youngest generation. Bates's dignified pencil drawings enchant as well.

Copyright (c) The New York Times Company [October 8, 2016]
Review by Booklist Review

*Starred Review* Frost, the gifted poet who wrote The Braid (2006), Crossing Stones (2009), and Salt (2013), offers a new verse novel for younger readers. The story unfolds in the past, in the present, and in the imagination Uncle Arthur's imagination, that is. All day, Faith and Peter watch to see whether their uncle, grieving after Aunt Lucy's death, will come back to their farm, as usual, on the day the first apple falls from the tree in their yard. That evening, he returns. He stays to share meals and memories, to peel apples for applesauce, and to tell a story to his great-niece and great-nephew. But they wonder, this time will he finally reveal how he really lost half of his finger? Before he leaves, Uncle Arthur gives Peter the knife he's carried for 60 years and passes along to Faith the gift of storytelling. Written with simplicity and grace, the story is told in three distinctive voices or four, counting the seven interspersed verses of Lucy's Song. From the light, airy lattice motif that opens each chapter to the well-defined character portrayals throughout the book, beautiful shaded pencil drawings enhance the story. Fresh, sweet, and crisp, this novel has a magic all its own.--Phelan, Carolyn Copyright 2016 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by School Library Journal Review

Gr 3-5-The fall of the first apple from the tree is the signal to Faith and Peter that it is applesauce weather and their aunt Lucy and uncle Arthur are on their way. But Peter and Faith aren't sure if Uncle Arthur will make it this year, as it is the first without his beloved Lucy. When Uncle Arthur finally arrives, he is not quite himself. He has lost the twinkle in his eye, and he is not energetically spinning yarns as he usually does. Faith and Peter are patient and slowly bring Uncle Arthur back to himself. They are hopeful that this will be the year he finally tells them truthfully how he lost his finger. This sweet story is told in verse through short, alternating chapters. Readers learn about Faith, Peter, and Uncle Arthur's perspectives and personalities through individual narrative poems. The book is divided into eight parts, each preceded by short poems entitled "Lucy's Song," through which readers are also introduced to Lucy and Arthur's life story from Aunt Lucy's point of view. The illustrations are charming and bring the setting to vivid life. VERDICT This quick, charming read is suited for those newly introduced to poetry or coping with a loss.-Tiffany Davis, Mount Saint Mary College, Newburgh, NY © Copyright 2016. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Horn Book Review

Two siblings, Faith and Peter, encourage their grieving elderly uncle to once again tell his enthralling stories during the first apple-picking season following the death of his wife. Coupled with expressive oil-based pencil drawings, simple verse reveals the rotating first-person perspectives of the characters in this intergenerational look at one family's mourning and conversational support. (c) Copyright 2017. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

Young and old bridge the generational gap to find comfort amid loss.With this slim offering, Frost returns to the novel in poems, though for a younger audience than the recent Salt (2014). Working with Bates, Frost presents middle-grade readers with white siblings Faith and Peter, who find themselves a bit lost, wondering if beloved Uncle Arthur, a gifted storyteller and trickster, will make the annual trek to visit them for the first apple harvest following his wife's passing: "A smell in the airif Lucy were here, / she'd breathe it deep. She'd smile wide. / That's all it would takewe'd be on our way: / Applesauce weather, she'd say." Aptly named Faith finds her hopes rewarded when, on the first apple's dropping, Uncle Arthur shows up despite her mother's and brother's doubts and Arthur's own hesitancy to return to a source of a lifetime of memories with Lucy. Throughout the tale, Bates' evocative oil-based pencil drawings build on the intimacy of Frost's narrative, deftly adding motion, whether it be in Faith's wind-swept hair or Peter hanging upside down from a tree. Frost's compact first-person poems shift in perspective from character to character, revealing the inner thoughts and feelings of each while simultaneously propelling the narrative and allowing for concise but realistic character development.Light yet poignant, this multigenerational family tale shows age proves no barrier when it comes to offering solace. (Verse/fiction. 8-12) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.