Building Our House (Hardcover)

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Building Our House Cover Image
By Jonathan Bean, Jonathan Bean (Illustrator)
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Staff Reviews

Such a charming and sweet book, I opened it up and fell in love. Move to the country and see what it takes to build you own home from the ground up. Incredible details and beautiful art make this delightful book a favorite of my son and I.

— From Patti H.

Winter 2012 Kids Next List

“It's not unusual to move from the city to the country, but this little girl's family is moving to an empty, weedy field. Soon they settle into a trailer, their 'house on wheels,' where they live for a year and a half while they construct their new house. New experiences like having a frame-raising party with all their relatives make the long process into an exciting adventure. With charming illustrations and engaging text, Bean recreates his own childhood experience.”
— Heidi Powell, Politics & Prose Books and Coffee Shop, Washington, DC


A New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice
Winner of the 2013 Boston Globe Horn Book Award for Best Picture Book
A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2013
A New York Times Book Review Notable Children's Book of 2013

In this unique construction book for kids who love tools and trucks, readers join a girl and her family as they pack up their old house in town and set out to build a new one in the country. Mom and Dad are going to make the new house themselves, from the ground up. From empty lot to finished home, every stage of their year-and-a-half-long building project is here. And at every step their lucky kids are watching and getting their hands dirty, in page after page brimming with machines, vehicles, and all kinds of house-making activities

As he imagines it through the eyes of his older sister, Building Our House is Jonathan Bean's retelling of his own family's true experience, and includes an afterword with photographs from the author's collection.

About the Author

JONATHAN BEAN received an M.F.A. from New York's School of Visual Arts and now lives and works in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. His first book, At Night, won the 2008 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award, and he is also the illustrator of two acclaimed picture books by Lauren Thompson, The Apple Pie That Papa Baked and One Starry Night. Jonathan's parents still live in the house the family built, outside of Fleetwood, Pennsylvania.

Praise For…

"Children ages 3–10 who already like tools and diggers aren’t the only ones who will respond to the warmth and optimism in these clear, detailed, gently color-washed pages."  —The Wall Street Journal

"Shot through with pioneer spirit . . . Bean’s terrific illustrations show a loving family, living in a mobile home as they gather lumber and pour concrete . . . Children will enjoy the comforting solidity of shoring up foundations and sawing strong boards." —The New York Times Book Review (Editors’ Choice)

* "Raise the roof for this picture book. It’s something special." —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

* "Lovingly told, this captivating tale will help satisfy a child’s curiosity of what it takes to create a building from scratch." —School Library Journal, starred review

* "Bean creates an engaging story as well as a glimpse into a warm family setting." —The Horn Book, starred review

"A warm look at the nuts and bolts of building a house and turning it into a home." —Publishers Weekly

"Wonderfully detailed, often humorous." —BCCB

"What’s heartwarming throughout is the depiction of a tight-knit family (‘My family makes up a strong crew of four’)." —Booklist

Product Details
ISBN: 9780374380236
ISBN-10: 0374380236
Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux
Publication Date: January 8th, 2013
Pages: 48
Language: English