Sophie Blackall pays tribute to a farmhouse and the lives lived inside. A thoughtful picture book about the lives of twelve children who grew up in a farmhouse over a hill, at the end of a road, by a glittering stream. A wistful and loving book to add to family story time.— Jen Steele
What we see at first to be a gorgeous, romantic, clever look at a classic American farm family also becomes a breathtaking personal experience for two-time Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall. I absolutely love her work, and this latest picture book is stunning! Blackall imagines the life of 12 children, their parents, and a very patient cat, living and working on the land. The depth of the artistic perspectives and details absorbed me and immediately grabbed my six-year-old buddy Landon's attention, too. The poetry of her storytelling rolls off the tongue, revealing Blackall's skill as both author and illustrator extraordinaire. Then the story turns, as the dozen children grow older, and we finally learn that Blackall herself bought an abandoned farmhouse that was being reclaimed by nature, with relics still inside of the family's lives. This is her story of how she honored the Swantak's farmhouse by using their past to reinvent their world. A brilliant, bold, beautiful, and essential celebration of America's bygone days by one of today's children's book masters!— Tim McCarthy
September/October 2022 Kids Indie Next List
“In this beautiful and heartwarming story, Blackall imagines the life of a family living in a 19th century farmhouse. The gently rhyming prose and nostalgia-laden illustrations make for a delightful read for old and young readers alike.”
— Jen Minor, Flyleaf Books, Chapel Hill, NC
This glorious new picture book from two-time Caldecott Medalist Sophie Blackall is as lavish and moving a tribute to a storied, beloved place as Hello Lighthouse.
Over a hill, at the end of a road, by a glittering stream that twists and turns stands a farmhouse.
Step inside the dollhouse-like interior of Farmhouse and relish in the daily life of the family that lives there, rendered in impeccable, thrilling detail. Based on a real family and an actual farmhouse where Sophie salvaged facts and artifacts for the making of this spectacular work, page after page bursts with luminous detail and joy. Join the award-winning, best-selling Sophie Blackall as she takes readers on an enchanting visit to a farmhouse across time, to a place that echoes with stories.
About the Author
Sophie Blackall has illustrated dozens of beautiful books including the Caldecott Medal-winning titles Hello Lighthouse and Finding Winnie by Lindsay Mattick. She is also the proprietor of Milkwood, a creative retreat housed in a restored dairy barn, adjacent to a falling-down house upon which this book is based. When not at the farm, she lives with her family in Brooklyn, NY. She invites you to visit her on Instagram @SophieBlackall.
*"A lovely, tender reimagination of people in a long-past time and place."—Kirkus, starred review
*"A love letter to the joys of country living and family life as well as the importance of treasuring the past and all its stories."—School Library Journal, starred review
*"The tale’s strong sense of place undergirds Blackall’s witness to the way environments change over time and stories survive long after material objects disappear, in a thoughtful, expertly executed work that looks simultaneously forward and back."—Publishers Weekly, starred review
*"Blackall’s illustrations are everything here, incorporating wallpaper, fabrics, and other items scavenged from the house melded together with ink, watercolor, gouache, and colored pencil to create vibrantly layered compositions with a tactile quality."—Horn Book, starred review
* "Genuinely captivating...A meditation on the creative process...Multifaceted and arresting...Irresistible."—Booklist, starred review
Praise for Hello Lighthouse:
A New York Times Bestseller and Caldecott Winner
* "Blackall's charmingly old-fashioned art style is beautifully matched to this nostalgia-rich story, which imbues an antiquated place with warmth and wonder."L—Booklist, starred review
* "A delightful bedtime read perfect for one on one sharing."—School Library Journal, starred review
* "It's a jewel of a creation and a gift to those who dream of retreat."—Publishers Weekly, starred review
"I will be surprised if a more exquisite picture book will be published this year...Children will be fascinated..."—New York Times Book Review
Praise for Finding Winnie:
A #1 New York Times bestseller and Winner of the 2016 Caldecott Medal
A New York Times Notable Children's Book of the Year
*"The sum total is as captivating as it is informative, transforming a personal family story into something universally resonant."—Horn Book (Starred Review)
*"Little ones who love Milne's classic stories will be enchanted by this heartening account of the bear's real-life origins."—Booklist (Starred Review)
*"A perfect melding of beautiful art with soulful, imaginative writing, this lovely story, penned by Colebourn's great-great granddaughter, is ideal for sharing aloud or poring over individually."—School Library Journal (Starred Review)
*"The book strikes a lovely, understated tone of wonder and family pride...[Sophie Blackall] proves that she's equally imaginative at chronicling straight-on reality too."—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Gorgeously illustrated...[a] delightful telling."—New York Times Book Review
"Exquisite"."—Wall Street Journal