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Swamp Angel (Caldecott Honor Book) [Hardcover]

By Anne Isaacs (Author) & Paul O. Zelinsky (Illustrator)
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Item description for Swamp Angel (Caldecott Honor Book) by Anne Isaacs & Paul O. Zelinsky...

In a zany story based on tall-tale traditions, Tennessee woodswoman Swamp Angel matches wits with Thundering Tarnation, a fearsome, hungry bear with a taste for settler's grub, in an epic confrontation that changes the face of the North American landscape.

Publishers Description
Working in an American primitive style animated by the humor and storytelling genius for which he is renowned, Caldecott Winner artist Paul O. Zelinsky puts oils to cherry and maple for this tall-tale competition between a Tennessee woods-woman extraordinaire and a hungry, fearsome bear. Thundering Tarnation has a bottomless appetite for settler's grub. When word goes out about a competition to hunt this four-legged forest of stubble, a young woman, second to none in buckskin bravery, signs up. "How about baking a pie, Angel?" the other hunters taunt. "I aim to," says Swamp Angel. "A bear pie." What follows is as witty a round of roughhousing as ever jostled the ranks of Americana. Anne Isaacs' original text unfolds in a crackling combination of irony, exaggeration, and bold image-making. Zelinsky's paintings respond with deft yet hilarious expressions, rhythmic shapes, and a sense of monumental motion, as benefits a heroine who can wield a tornado like a lasso, drink a lake dry, and snore down a forest. In the course of these grand shenanigans, the Great Smoky Mountains are stirred up, Montana's short-grass prairie laid down, and Thundering Tarnation's fate proves to have no less a reach than the starry heavens. "Swamp Angel" marks the debut of a promising new storyteller and adds to the tall-tale traditions a pictorial counterpart that will entertain and endure for a long time to come.

Awards and Recognitions
Swamp Angel (Caldecott Honor Book) by Anne Isaacs & Paul O. Zelinsky has received the following awards and recognitions -
  • Caldecott Medal - 1995 Honor Book - Picture Book category

Citations And Professional Reviews
Swamp Angel (Caldecott Honor Book) by Anne Isaacs & Paul O. Zelinsky has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
  • Wilson Children's Catalog - 01/01/2010 page 1372
  • School Library Journal - 12/01/1994 page 76
  • Booklist - 10/15/1994 page 424
  • Wilson Children's Catalog - 01/01/1995 page 72
  • Publishers Weekly - 10/03/1994 page 69
  • Kirkus Review - Children - 10/15/1994 page 1408
  • Hornbook Guide to Children - 07/01/1994 page 41
  • Booklist Ed Choice Youth - 01/15/1995 page 862
  • ALA Notable Childrens Books - 04/01/1995 page 1412
  • Wilson Children's Catalog 96 - 01/01/1996 page 678
  • SLJ's Best Books - 12/01/1994 page 24
  • Wilson Children's Catalog - 01/01/2001 page 624
  • School Library Journal - 11/01/1997
  • School Library Journal - 12/01/1994
  • Wilson Children's Catalog - 01/01/2006 page 906

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Dutton Juvenile
Pages   48
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 12.42" Width: 9.38" Height: 0.36"
Weight:   1.2 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Sep 1, 1994
Publisher   Dutton Juvenile
Age  4-8
ISBN  0525452710  
ISBN13  9780525452713  
UPC  050553016997  

Availability  2 units.
Availability accurate as of Oct 23, 2017 04:11.
Usually ships within one to two business days from La Vergne, TN.
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More About Anne Isaacs & Paul O. Zelinsky

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Also the author of Caldecott Honor Book Swamp Angel, Anne Isaacs was born and raised in Buffalo, New York.She feels most at home in rural environments such as the redwood forest near Santa Cruz, California where she lives with her family. Her husband and three children have built their own treehouse, which they share with several squirrels and blue jays. "All my life," says Anne Isaacs, "poetry has affected me more than any other genre. I have read and memorized it, studied it, loved, and written it since I was nine."Ms. Isaacs lives in Santa Cruz, California with her family.
"It's a little surprising to me, when I think back over my childhood in suburban Chicago, and recall the things I liked and the things I did, that I never considered the possibility of becoming a book illustrator. During my elementary school years I was always collaborating with classmates to create imaginary worlds and the stories to take place in them and putting it all down in pictures.

"In the third grade I drew bestiaries of ridiculous animals, their habits and habitats; in fifth grade my best friend and I, working through the mail, developed an island world of two competing countries. I think they were called Igglebeania and Squigglebeania (I know we never did agree about the spelling), and they teemed with colorful characters and important incidents. They now, like Atlantis, are lost to the world. At fourteen we wrote a novel about a monkey astronaut who saves the world from encroaching gorillas. Of course I made the pictures, and my friend's father took it on himself to send our opus out to real publishers for their consideration. It was with no small shock that several years ago, as I was leafing through my friend's scrapbook, I lit on a polite rejection letter from a publisher who was now a friend and with whom I had just published two books!

"The earliest books that were important to me were, as far as I was concerned, not written or illustrated by anybody -- they just appeared in the library or in my room. The Color Kittens and The Tawny Scrawny Lion and many others that I can and can't remember filled my young childhood. It's the pictures that I remember, for the most part.

"Some years later I had book heroes: William Pene du Bois and Robert Lawson were the most lasting. I especially loved The Twenty-One Balloons and The Fantastic Flight. It didn't occur to me that these writers were real people living in houses somewhere and doing real things.

"Then a few years ago when I was driving in Connecticut with some friends they happened to mention that Robert Lawson had lived nearby. Inside my head, I jumped. Robert Lawson lived in a real place? In this world? Not having thought about it since my childhood, it seems I still harbored the notion that the man was just a paragraph on a book jacket flap. Now I guess that I, too, am taking a place on the back flap of book jackets. What the children reading my books will make me out to be, if anything, I can't guess. But it really doesn't matter: it's not the authors they should remember, it's the books. (Or maybe, for the most part the pictures!)"

Known for his versatility, Mr. Zelinsky does not feel his work represents a specific style. "I want the pictures to speak in the same voice as the words. This desire has led me to try various kinds of drawings in different books. I have used quite a wide stretch of styles, and I'm fortunate to have been asked to illustrate such a range of stories."

Paul Zelinsky was born in Evanston, Illinois. He attended Yale University, where he took a course with Maurice Sendak, which later inspired him to pursue a career in children's books. Afterwards he received a graduate degree in painting from Tyler School of Art, in Philadelphia and Rome. Paul Zelinsky lives in New York with his wife, Deborah, and the younger of their two daughters.

Anne Isaacs currently resides in Santa Cruz, in the state of California.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Children > Ages 4-8 > General
2Books > Subjects > Children > Ages 4-8 > Picture Books
3Books > Subjects > Children > Authors & Illustrators, A-Z > ( Z ) > Zelinsky, Paul O.
4Books > Subjects > Children > Literature > Fairy Tales, Folk Tales & Myths > General
5Books > Subjects > Children > Literature > Fairy Tales, Folk Tales & Myths
6Books > Subjects > Children > Literature > Humorous
7Books > Subjects > Literature & Fiction > World Literature > Mythology > Children's Books > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about Swamp Angel (Caldecott Honor Book)?

Great NON-Princess Story!  Nov 10, 2006
My 3 year old loves this book! She enjoys looking at the beautiful illustrations and listening to the great escapades of this strong female character. If you and your family like Paul Bunyan stories - this one is great for women to be.
Swamp Angel  May 22, 2006
Swamp angel is about a friendly, strong, giant girl; from the South. The conflict of the story is, Tarnation, a giant gorilla is eating up all the food. So, the mayor decides to have a contest to see which man can kill him. Whoever succeeds, will get to keep the pelt of the giant animal. Everyone who dared to try to kill the beast, failed, until one day the Swamp angel stepped in. This book is extremely funny with wonderful illustrations. I believe this book would be suitable for children under the age of eight. I give this book two thumbs up.
A Book For All  Apr 21, 2006
Swamp Angel is a great adventurous folktale, with unbelievable illistrations. And a funny southern accent that all will love. A heart warming tale bout a freindly, super-strong, giant girl; who saves her dear little home from dangers like a tornado. Anne Isaacs did an exceptional job to make this book humorous, exciting, adventurous, and fun-filled for all especialy children. Swamp angel is a considerate, generous, and all around nice person. Yet she's strong, brave, and determined. This story is taken place in Tennesse, down south. The problem is that Thunderin' Tarnation is eating all the food, so the mayor decides to have a contest. The first person to kill Thunerin' Tarnation gets to keep the pelt of the giant beast, saves their intire state's food from being eaten, and dthey will have an abundance of food. Many tried and almost all failed but one Swamp angel. But she still hasn't saw Thunderin' Tarnation yet. Until one day by the lake she spotted Old Tarnation. And that was were the showdown between Old Tarnation and Swamp Angel began. If you're a Paul Bunyun fan, well then this book is for you. I thought this was a fun and exciting book. If you read this book, I can almost garuntee that you will feal the same way. I give Swamp Angel two thumbs up!
I really liked Tarnation!  Aug 23, 2004
WARNING!!This review may contain Spoilers!

This story starts out by telling about the birth of a young girl who is amazingly big for her age. No one knows that she will become a great woodswoman since she cannot climb a tree at birth without help:). As she grows older she saves her town numerous times with her strength earning her the name "Swamp Angel".

When a mean bear comes to town many hunters try to capture it before it causes anymore damage.(One is Swamp Angel) Eventually she does capture the bear, named Tarnation, and kills him. Call me a sucker for a happy,happy ending, but I was hoping Tarnation would give up his evil ways and use his strength for good. And then they could have all lived...well you know what I mean.
What's not to like?  Dec 7, 2003
A truly enjoyable folktale. With Paul Zelinsky's inventive and endlessly amusing illustrations, the book tells as well as it views. With sentences like, "Varmint, I'm much obliged for that pelt you're carryin'", Swamp Angel's showdown with the bear Thundering Tarnation is of epic proportions. Zelinsky has truly outdone himself in his portrayals of their fight. There are thousands of tiny illustrations hidden on each page for kids to discover and delight in. The fight itself is about good old-fashioned wrassling, and it's a joy to watch. Zelinsky painted his illustrations on actual wood veneer, hoping to give the book a folk-art feel of some sort. The result is a beautiful story that adults and kids will both enjoy. As I might have given away, I'm a fan. book could easily be paired with another tall tales, possibly that of the other gigantic hero Paul Bunyun or the great John Henry. Both would fit in well with this story, though Swamp Angel owes perhaps most of her telling to Pecos Bill more than anyone else.

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