- Board book: 13 pages
- Publisher: Philomel Books; 1 edition (March 23, 1994)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0399226907
- ISBN-13: 978-0399226908
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.6 x 7.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 68 g
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1.477 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Very Hungry Caterpillar Board book – 23 March 1994
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About the Author
Eric Carle is acclaimed and beloved as the creator of brilliantly illustrated and innovatively designed picture books for very young children. His best-known work, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, has eaten its way into the hearts of literally millions of children all over the world and has been translated into more than 25 languages and sold over twelve million copies. Since the Caterpillar was published in 1969, Eric Carle has illustrated more than sixty books, many best sellers, most of which he also wrote.
Born in Syracuse, New York, in 1929, Eric Carle moved with his parents to Germany when he was six years old; he was educated there, and graduated from the prestigious art school, the Akademie der bildenden Kunste, in Stuttgart. But his dream was always to return to America, the land of his happiest childhood memories. So, in 1952, with a fine portfolio in hand and forty dollars in his pocket, he arrived in New York. Soon he found a job as a graphic designer in the promotion department of The New York Times. Later, he was the art director of an advertising agency for many years.
One day, respected educator and author, Bill Martin Jr, called to ask Carle to illustrate a story he had written. Martin's eye had been caught by a striking picture of a red lobster that Carle had created for an advertisement. Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? was the result of their collaboration. It is still a favorite with children everywhere. This was the beginning of Eric Carle's true career. Soon Carle was writing his own stories, too. His first wholly original book was 1,2,3 to the Zoo, followed soon afterward by the celebrated classic, The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
Eric Carle's art is distinctive and instantly recognizable. His art work is created in collage technique, using hand-painted papers, which he cuts and layers to form bright and cheerful images. Many of his books have an added dimension - die-cut pages, twinkling lights as in The Very Lonely Firefly, even the lifelike sound of a cricket's song as in The Very Quiet Cricket - giving them a playful quality: a toy that can be read, a book that can be touched. Children also enjoy working in collage and many send him pictures they have made themselves, inspired by his illustrations. He receives hundreds of letters each week from his young admirers. The secret of Eric Carle's books' appeal lies in his intuitive understanding of and respect for children, who sense in him instinctively someone who shares their most cherished thoughts and emotions.
The themes of his stories are usually drawn from his extensive knowledge and love of nature - an interest shared by most small children. Besides being beautiful and entertaining, his books always offer the child the opportunity to learn something about the world around them. It is his concern for children, for their feelings and their inquisitiveness, for their creativity and their intellectual growth that, in addition to his beautiful artwork, makes the reading of his books such a stimulating and lasting experience.
Carle says: "With many of my books I attempt to bridge the gap between the home and school. To me home represents, or should represent; warmth, security, toys, holding hands, being held. School is a strange and new place for a child. Will it be a happy place? There are new people, a teacher, classmates - will they be friendly? I believe the passage from home to school is the second biggest trauma of childhood; the first is, of course, being born. Indeed, in both cases we leave a place of warmth and protection for one that is unknown. The unknown often brings fear with it. In my books I try to counteract this fear, to replace it with a positive message. I believe that children are naturally creative and eager to learn. I want to show them that learning is really both fascinating and fun."
copyright (c) 2000 by Penguin Group (USA) Books for Young Readers. All rights reserved.
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
The different sized pages in the middle of the book (after the caterpillar pops out of his egg on Sunday morning) showing different foods with holes punched in the centers to indicate where he's nibbled through them are darling - each page is thick enough that I think I'm going to cut a caterpillar-sized piece of green pipecleaner to give him so he can watch his very own caterpillar making its way through the one red apple he eats on Monday, two green pears on Tuesday, three purple plums on Wednesday, four red strawberries on Thursday, five bright orange oranges on Friday, and then the variety of multi-colored foods (probably not a caterpillar's scientifically accurate diet, but fun!) he eats on Saturday that leads to his stomache ache - chocolate cake, ice cream cone, pickle, Swiss cheese, salami, lollipop, cherry pie, sausage, cupcake and watermelon - goodness gracious!
On Sunday, he limits himself to one green leaf, builds his "small house, called a cocoon, around himself", stays in there for over two weeks before he emerges as a multi-colored butterfly, whose wingspan takes up the final two pages! Though we probably won't expect our grandson to comprehend the scientific term of metamorphosis, he'll certainly grasp that the caterpillar's transformation is magical - a pretty good description of the book itself!
The story, of course, is a classic. We had the Very Hungry Caterpillar as a board book from the time my kid was born until a cat hairballed on it a couple years later. I didn't replace it because I figured he was outgrowing board books anyway. However when we saw it as a paperback at his dentist's office a few weeks ago, he got so excited that I realized we need to own it again.
The actual book however, didn't have the pages cut or holes punched where the caterpillar eats through the foods. That's always been a defining feature of this book so it's just not the same. I'm returning it and will have to try again from an actual store where I can flip through it first.
My husband and I decided to accompany the book with its teether Rattle for our little one when he was 4 months old because we thought he would enjoy the reading time of this book more... we were right.
He has loved the book and his rattle too. He loved let the toy caterpillar eat the pages while I was reading for him and put his little fingers in the holes.
The illustrations are so unique and eye catching, the colors are bright, the pages are sturdy and the story holds his attention.
This book, like the others of Eric Carle, is interactive and rhythmic.
Children learn easily colors, the name of different fruits and foods and even counting how many are in each page.
The book is small so it's easy to hold for a baby/toddler and very durable.
A must have
The book is the story of a very hungry caterpillar who eats and eats and eats some more, and then sleeps in a cocoon (or a "cackoon" as my son says) and wakes up and emerges as a beautiful butterfly.
The book is short, but fun for littles.