SPIDERS IN THE FRUIT CELLAR by Barbara M. Joosse

SPIDERS IN THE FRUIT CELLAR

By
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Little Elizabeth is proud to be big enough to help Mama but terrified when she is sent to the fruit cellar for a jar of peaches: there are spiders in the fruit cellar, and Elizabeth is sure that they are waiting to get her, ""to jump on me with their hairy legs and run all over me."" So Elizabeth lingers at the door, retreats, returns, finally braves the fruit cellar, but falls and breaks the jar in her rush to get away. The story ends with Mama helping her clean up, explaining that spiders are ""out friends"" (they ""eat insects that would like to eat our apples and pears""), offering to trade jobs (""I'll get the peaches and you can wash the dishes""), and confessing that ""when I was your age I was afraid of mice."" All of which pretty much reduces this to a dramatized message, though it's gently done. Chorao makes Elizabeth and her surroundings appealing, and kids tan easily identity with the little girl's conflict.

Pub Date: March 15th, 1983
Publisher: Knopf