Friday, March 14, 2014

The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton






Genre: Buildings / Time

Year Published: 1942

Year Read: 1994

Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers



I have been going through some books from my childhood and I have stumbled upon this great gem called “The Little House.”  “The Little House” is a Caldecott Medal award winning book by Virginia Lee Burton and it is about how a small house learns the true meaning of “There’s no place like home” when a growing civilization is built around it over the years.  “The Little House” is definitely a gem that you cannot afford to miss!


When I first read this book when I was little, I thought it was a bit boring about reading about a little house just sitting there while everything around her was changing, but after reading it now, I started to see how amazing and beautiful this book really is!  Virginia Lee Burton, author of “Mike Mulligan and his Steam Shovel,” has done a terrific job at both illustrating and writing this book as it details a little house’s experience to life in the city.  I loved the way that Virginia Lee Burton made the little house seem more like a human being than an object since the little house has to deal with the changes that happened around her and this book strongly related to me and also many children who had a similar experience since where I lived, more houses are built around my neighborhood whereas the first time we came to our neighborhood years ago, there were barely any houses in sight and dealing with this kind of experience sometimes gave me anxiety, but I eventually got used to it.  I also loved the message of the book about just having a simple life can make you happy since the book teaches children that you do not have to have a rich apartment complex or a huge house to be happy, you can just have a small house or a comfortable house that suits your needs to be happy with your life.  Virginia Lee Burton’s illustrations are just beautiful and outstanding as ever as the little house is shown to be pink and is always smiling in every image except for the images of where the little house is in the city and is miserable.  My favorite images in this book were of the scenes where the little house is shown in several different seasons like winter, fall, spring, and summer and you can see the atmosphere around the little house change as each season comes by such as in the summer, everything is green and in winter, everything is white.  I also loved the way that Virginia Lee Burton contrasted the country as a peaceful looking place by having light colors around the environment while the city is shown to be a dark and dreary looking place.


All in all, “The Little House” is a beautiful book about various changes going on in your surroundings that many children will definitely enjoy for many years!  I would recommend this book to children ages four and up since there is nothing inappropriate in this book for smaller children. 




* 1943 Caldecott Medal



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