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The Little House: 03/23/11

cover art

The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton earned the Caldecott Medal in 1943. It's the charming story of a little house that was built far from the city and the city grows up around it. The house is moved again to the countryside and the book ends with the sense that the city will someday meet up with the house again.

The book can be seen as an anti urban sprawl story but it's really more about the passage of time and the little reminders that are left, like the little country houses tucked between factories, strip malls and skyscrapers. Sometimes these houses get a second chance at the countryside, like the cabin my parents bought twenty years ago. It had been two little houses down in San Diego and moved up by truck to the mountains.

This book is on my very short list of favorite childhood books that has made a lasting impression with me. All through my life I have been keeping my eyes open for little houses nestled in between city buildings. My current home town has dozens of them. They are there in any city.

Five stars.

Comments (4)

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Comment #1: Thursday, March, 24, 2011 at 02:43:27

Michelle @ The True Book Addict

I think we discussed this one before. It is in my top five favorite books from my childhood. My sons also love it. A truly wonderful book!

Comment #2: Saturday, March 26, 2011 at 11:24:24


It's certainly on my short list of favorites.

Comment #3: Thursday, March, 24, 2011 at 16:44:44


I always loved this book. My kid has a copy now. One of my favorite parts is the way it shows not only the passage of time, via changing transportation methods and such but also the cycles of the seasons.

Comment #4: Saturday, March 26, 2011 at 11:25:04


Exactly... it does such a wonderful job of showing the passage of time both the long term and the seasonal.

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