THE HOUSE ON MAPLE STREET by Bonnie Pryor

THE HOUSE ON MAPLE STREET

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Who lived here in times past? Taking the site of what might be her own house in Ohio, Pryor imagines a 300-year succession of animals, Native Americans, white settlers and more recent inhabitants. A forest fire clears the way for buffalo; later, an arrowhead lost by one child is found by another, nested in a doll's teacup, and lost again to await a 20th-century child's discovery. Despite the title, this is more the history of a location than of a house, since the first house is replaced by a larger one, which in turn crumbles and is torn down; the present brick house seems to be only 40 years old, although no dates are given, and the reader, or helpful adult, will have to rely on pictorial clues and knowledge of history to place events appropriately. The richly hued, realistic illustrations contribute ample period detail to this picture book; vigorous and well-designed, they give a good sense of the sequence of history. The bits of story--the little gift who comes back to visit as a great-aunt, the modern children who wonder about the arrowhead--are authentic enough, but nothing organizes the whole into the kind of dynamic pattern that distinguished Button's The Little House. Still, an at tractive summary of change in the American past.

Pub Date: March 31st, 1987
ISBN: 0780723686
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Morrow