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Papa and the Pioneer Quilt

by Jean Van Leeuwen
Illustrated by Rebecca Bond

Published by Dial, 2007
32 pages
ISBN: 0-8037-3028-4

Ages 4-8

Rebecca’s father has wandering feet and his family needs to wander with him. Moving from the security of a known home environment to a place far, far away from extended family and friends can be a scary experience for anyone. Now consider how daunting the task might be to a young girl who must walk across country, from Pennsylvania to Ohio to Indiana to Missouri on to Oregon, with short settlements along the way. So was the experience for many pioneering families. Van Leeuwen’s story captures both the hardships and joys of the pioneer journey of one courageous little girl. To focus her enthusiasm and resiliency during the trip, Rebecca picks up scraps of fabric along the way. She plans to create a quilt from the scraps upon arrival at the family’s end destination. Each fabric piece holds a story and memory of events along the way, a type of warm scrapbook to provide comfort in the future. Soft and faded tones in Rebecca Bond’s watercolor illustrations help to grasp the texture of both the experiences of young cross-country travelers and the fabric itself. (DA) ©2007 Cooperative Children’s Book Center

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