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Hardcover Me, All Alone, at the End of the World Book

ISBN: 0763615862

ISBN13: 9780763615864

Me, All Alone, at the End of the World

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Format: Hardcover

Condition: Very Good

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List Price $16.99

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Book Overview

From the celebrated picture-book team of M. T. Anderson and Kevin Hawkes comes a wistful, wondrous ode to the natural pleasures of peace and solitude. The boy lives alone at the End of the World, hunting treasure with old maps, finding fossils, whistling tunes, playing ball by the drop. It's a peaceful, contemplative life, and the boy is content. Until, that is, a self-styled Professional Visionary arrives and puts up a sign: CONSTANTINE SHIMMER'S...

Customer Reviews

3 ratings

Long live the wild places

A young boy glories in his solitude until one day a man arrives and starts building in the boy's oasis. At first the boy is excited as he meets new friends and has fun with them in his country retreat. But soon the man has built the area up so much the wildness of the wind is gone. Even though the boy likes having friends, he misses his solitude more. He leaves his home in search of a new one to replace the wilderness that no longer exists in the crowded over developed resort the man created. Told in first person and illustrated by delightful watercolor paintings and pen line art, this book carries a subtle warning to conserve our wild places because simple enjoyments are worth their weight in gold. review by author/illustrator of Watchers, and illustrator of Rabbit's Song by S.J. Tucker

Escape for all ages

This book is full of exciting and interesting words and imagery. For anyone who values the need for quiet in the midst of this cellphone, computer, flashing advertisement filled world. It is one of the few children's books that I actually enjoy reading and never seem to tire of. My kids (age 4 and age 7) listen very intently and seem to hold on to every word. The images hold their attention and seem to take them right into this imaginary world.

A storyline far more real than make-believe

The narrator of this picture book is a young boy who lives alone at the edge of a cliff. He leads an idyllic life in a paradise of his own creation, away from the demands of modern civilization. His time is his own and he spends it exploring, reading, and whistling to his mule. Enter the intruding Constantine Shimmer, Professional Visionary, who finds the place so wonderful, he wants to turn it into a tourist attraction. And he succeeds. The boy is temporarily caught up in the excitement, making new friends with youngsters who come to vacation away from the city. But eventually he realizes that he misses the solitude and the sound of the wind. He leaves to find it elsewhere. Hawkes' fanciful illustrations depict the remote setting perfectly without singling out a specific identity. (Is it the Grand Canyon? Or Niagara Falls?) More details are revealed the more you study the pages, which is a marvelous characteristic for a children's book to have. Young readers will wish they could find such a hideout of their own. This book came to me just as I learned that my grandparents' farm in eastern Pennsylvania was being targeted by a developer. Condos and a strip mall are likely to obliterate the territory I used as a playground to explore nature in the 1960s and 1970s. No child will ever again climb into that barn hayloft. I'll admit that I'm not as accepting and mature as Anderson's main character is. I'm not ready to let Civilization take over a property that's been in our family since 1915. I haven't yet decided what, if anything, I'll do to try to stop the process. Paging through this book, however, inspires me to do Something. The Booklist reviewer found multi-leveled meanings in the text and pictures which passed me by. My interpretation is that this book could generate valuable discussion with readers of any age. Topics could range from the definition of home to environmental protection and the ills of urban sprawl. How long will we allow this kind of travesty to continue? "Me, All Alone, at the End of the World" is a thought-provoking book that should be put into the hands of most children and many adults. Let's send copies to our legislators as well, accompanied by recordings of Joni Mitchell's "Big Yellow Taxi." Anderson's book is a visualization of paving paradise to put up a parking lot.
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