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PRAIRIE PRIMER A TO Z by Caroline Stutson


by Caroline Stutson & illustrated by Susan Condie Lamb

Age Range: 3 - 7

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1996
ISBN: 0-525-45163-3
Publisher: Dutton

 Stutson's rhyming alphabet book works its way over the prairie landscape. The time is early this century; the setting is a homesteader's handsome manse. These are drowsy days, the chores none too taxing, every neighbor and creature an amiable soul. ``I two Irons growing hot/breakfast porridge in the pot/When bowls are cleared away . . ./J a game of Jacks we play.'' Some will say that Stutson (By the Light of the Halloween Moon, 1993) has stripped the homesteader's life of its drama and heroism--a denaturalization process attended by Lamb's misty, sentimental illustrations. Story, setting, and characters are highly romanticized, and this paean is nothing if not harmonious: ``H the House that calls us in/`Coming! Coming!' we all sing,/on the porch for one last swing.'' It's extremely old-fashioned in sensibility and may not find an audience among the rough-and-ready preschool set. (Picture book. 3-7)