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HARRY’S HOME by Catherine Anholt

HARRY’S HOME

By Catherine Anholt (Author) , Laurence Anholt (Author) , Catherine Anholt (Illustrator) , Laurence Amholt (Illustrator)

Age Range: 3 - 7

Pub Date: April 6th, 2000
ISBN: 0-374-32870-6
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

This enchanting story about a city boy who goes to visit Grandad on the farm teaches children about the concept of “home,” showing that while each person’s (or animal’s) home might be different, each is special and precious to its inhabitants. Harry loves the hustle and bustle of his native city—he loves the fast pace, the fire engines, the escalators and elevators, and even the noise that characterizes urban life. Grandad, on the other hand, loves his quiet farm nestled in the beautiful countryside, where his beloved animals, trees, and flowers surround him. On Harry’s birthday, Grandad gives Harry a very special present—a ticket to come visit him. This will be Harry’s first trip to the farm and his first time away from his mother. After an exciting journey on a bus, train, boat, another bus, and finally a taxi (the double-page spread charmingly depicts Harry and Grandad traversing a wide variety of terrains), they arrive at Grandad’s home. But in the night, Harry feels homesick and wants to go home. He misses the bright lights and can’t get used to the quiet that his grandfather loves. Luckily, Grandad knows just the trick—he gives Harry a baby lamb to take care of for the week. After his one bout of homesickness, Harry soon adores the farm and loves seeing the animals in their own homes—the pigsty, henhouse, dovecote, etc. Underlying Harry’s story, there is also a lesson of tolerance—neither Harry’s city home nor Grandad’s country home is better—everyone is entitled to his own preference, but must respect the feelings of others. While Harry’s homesickness is glossed over too quickly (had it been explored more deeply, this would have been an extremely useful book to accompany children on trips to their grandparents), Harry’s Home is a delightful book filled with lovely watercolor illustrations in vivid, yet soft colors with especially beautiful hues of blues and purples. Harry and Grandad are an irresistible duo. (Picture book. 3-7)