Module 6: Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett, Illustrated by Jon Klassen
Annabelle lives in a town filled with either black soot or white snow. One day she comes across a small box containing some colorful yarn. She decides to knit scarves and sweaters for herself, her dog, and her family. She realizes there is still plenty of yarn! She continues to knit sweaters for the people in the town, the trees, and just about anything that could wear a sweater but she still has plenty of yarn. An evil archduke attempts to steal her yarn but it makes its way magically back to her as she brightens up the small town she lives in.
I’ve read other Klassen books and I absolutely love his illustrations. This is my first book by Barnett but it was a perfect blend of whimsy and morality. Annabelle is a sweet, helpful character and her cute little story belongs in every child’s library.
“Like the very best picture books, this is a simple tale where text and pictures are brilliantly combined. There is a powerful allegorical message about greed, beauty and creativity.”
– Sophie Smiley
“Klassen’s art, however, really steals the show. The sharply edged figures with slyly comic, slightly skewed geometry recall his work in I Want My Hat Back (BCCB 9/11); the bleak wintry landscape is virtually monochromatic, with almost everything—kids, houses, pets—shades of a murky brown against the snow, save for Annabelle’s varicolored creations (and a touch of pink in chilled cheeks and noses).”
– Deborah Stevenson
This book is a great way to introduce knitting, crocheting or really any craft to students. When the book came out HarperCollins held an Extra Yarn Contest (http://extrayarn.tumblr.com/) where bookstores knitted sweaters for “things that didn’t even wear sweaters” like Annabelle does in the book. This is a cute idea that could be used at any library during the winter months.
Barnett, M, and Klassen, J (Illustrator). (2012). Extra Yarn. New York, New York: Harper Collins.
Extra Yarn [image]. (2012). Retrieved from http://thereisabookforthat.com/2012/04/08/extra-yarn/.
Smiley, S. (2013). Barnett, Mac and Klassen, Jon: Extra Yarn. School Librarian 61(3), 149. Retrieved from http://www.slj.com/.
Stevenson, D. (2012). Review of Extra Yarn. Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books 65(5), 243-244. Retrieved from http://bccb.lis.illinois.edu/.