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A Chair For My Mother Paperback – Jan 23 2007

4.7 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Greenwillow Books; New edition (Jan. 23 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0688040748
  • ISBN-13: 978-0688040741
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 21 x 26.7 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 136 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #52,120 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From the Back Cover

After a fire destroys their home and possessions, Rosa, her mother, and grandmother save and save until they can afford to buy one big, comfortable chair that all three of them can enjoy.After their home is destroyed by a fire, Rosa, her mother and grandmother save their coins to buy a really comfortable chair for all to enjoy. "A superbly conceived picture book expressing the joyful spirit of a loving family."--Horn Book.

About the Author

Vera B. Williams began her career in children’s books by illustrating Hooray for Me!, written by Remy Charlip with Lilian Moore. Her beloved A Chair for My Mother won multiple awards, including a Caldecott Honor, and “More, More, More,” Said the Baby also received a Caldecott Honor. Vera B. Williams was the recipient of the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award; she was awarded the 2009 NSK Neustadt Prize for Children’s Literature; and she was the US nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Award in 2004. Vera B. Williams died on October 16, 2015, shortly before this book was completed.



Vera B. Williams began her career in children’s books by illustrating Hooray for Me!, written by Remy Charlip with Lilian Moore. Her beloved A Chair for My Mother won multiple awards, including a Caldecott Honor, and “More, More, More,” Said the Baby also received a Caldecott Honor. Vera B. Williams was the recipient of the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award; she was awarded the 2009 NSK Neustadt Prize for Children’s Literature; and she was the US nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Award in 2004. Vera B. Williams died on October 16, 2015, shortly before this book was completed.


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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Vera B. Williams's best known book. In this story a young girl, her single mom, and her grandmother all occupy the same apartment after their home is destroyed by a fire. To fill their empty space the women scrimp and save for a big comfy armchair.
This is a story of perseverance, but it isn't preachy in any way. The family looks to be South American, but this isn't drummed into the readers' heads. All it's trying to do is tell a story about getting what you want when you've faced a disaster of some kind. Though I've never really been a fan of Williams's art, this book is very well done. Ms. Williams works with a rough watercolor style that leaves little room for fine details. Just the same, when the mother in this book sees her house on fire after buying new pumps, the next picture displays the woman, new shoes in hand, sprinting towards the house. It's the little touches that make any book interesting, and this book falls into that category. Finally, it's a bright cheerful story that is smart enough to acknowledge sadness and hardship. An excellent book for kids.
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Format: Paperback
I borrowed this book from the library to read aloud to my 2 year old. He loves it and I'm adding it to my wish list.
The story is about a family of mother, grandmother and daughter (maybe 7 or 8 years old). The mother works as a waitress to support her family. The little girl realizes and appreciates how hard her mother works - she often helps out at the diner herself after school. She's learned from her mother the value of saving - when her mother's boss gives her some money for filling the salt shakers, she puts half in the big jar at home.
The little girl speaks of a fire that detroyed their home and all their possessions. Through the help of extended family and friends they are able to start over. However their new apartment lacks a place for her mother to "take a load off [her] feet" The family saves coins in a big jar for a year to be able to buy a new easy chair - from the mother's tips, from the grandmother's market savings, from the little girl's "earnings".
The pictures are beautiful - colorful, almost luscious. Our favorites are of the mother collapsed in a chair while the little girl counts her tips and a picture of the little girl's fantasy chair - huge, covered in velvet with roses on it.
The words are simple enough that beginning readers will be able to master it, especially after having listened to it being read aloud over and over again. My son has asked for it at least a dozen times in the last week!
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By A Customer on Nov. 17 2001
Format: Paperback
This book is about a family that lost all of their furniture in a house fire. The family members decide to save coins to buy a new chair for their home. The mother is a waitress and tries to save all of the money she can to help out the family. The mother and daughter take all of the money they save it in a jar. When the jar is full they go out and buy a beautiful chair for the family to enjoy. This book is appropriate for ages 6 to 10. The illustrations are very meticulous with a painted appearance and show exactly what is going on in the text. Each page has an inventive and vibrant border on it that pertains to what is happening on that particular page. This is a Caldecott Honor Book that teaches a valuable lesson on how hard times can always be worked through and that working hard and giving 110% will always make a difference.
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Format: Hardcover
I really loved this book. It tells a sweet story about how a family is supported by friends and family after they lose their house to a fire. It also shows how the family works together to save up for a chair so the mother, who works as a waitress to support them, can have a comfortable place to sit.
I give it 4 stars only because my son did not care for it. I can only assume it is because none of the characters were boys and, it's really not a "boy" story, I suppose. He may also have had a difficult time relating to the whole idea of single parenthood. This is a rather foreign thing to him.
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Format: Paperback
I am almost 20 years old and I won this book when I was in pre-kindergarten---I love it as much as I did then. The pictures are (obviously) marvelous and the story is very touching. It's one of those books that an adult can read and enjoy as much as the child. You find something new in it each time you look at the pictures. The story is especially current as it discusses hard financial times, single parenting, and families struggling to make it. All in all, its great!
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Format: Paperback
Mama brings home the biggest jar that she can find. They all save their change until the jar is filled. They had a fire and are starting out new again. They really want a big comfy chair. My mom loved to read this to my brother and I when we were young. I love reading it to my son and he loves the book too. This book goes in our book box with just our favorite books.
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