Ernest P. catches a grasshopper in a pickle jar that his mother includes among Ernest's most precious belongings as they get ready to move to a new home
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The author of Loop the Loop (1992, ALA Notable) tells another story remarkable for its sensitivity and deft interweaving of themes. Though it's hard to say goodbye, Ernest's mama is driving her two children from the East to Minnesota, where ``there's a job waiting,'' and family. ``Most precious belongings only,'' she says, and holds her tongue when Ernest takes pet grasshopper Albert. During the long trip, Ernest begins to see the confining car--he and sister Ella have 50 fights by Indianapolis--as resembling Albert's jar; even though Albert is a memento of home, he lets him go at Aunt Leona's and is rewarded with Mama's warm approval: ``Not every boy could have done that on his own.'' Dugan carefully builds Ernest's understanding with beautifully integrated details. But, here, she's less lucky with her illustrator: Baker's watercolors are expressive, but their clumsy, static forms don't serve the story well, and she hasn't solved the problem of making the cooped-up journey visually interesting. Still, unusually perceptive, well-told, and likable. (Picture book. 4-8) -- Copyright ©1993, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From Booklist:
Ages 5-8. When he leaves his East Coast city neighborhood for his new rural Minnesota home, Ernest P. brings his most precious possessions: his comic book, his catcher's mitt, and, housed in a pickle jar, Albert the grasshopper. Sharing the back seat with his little sister during the long car trip, Ernest P. endures territory squabbles, homesickness, and boredom, but it helps to have Albert along to talk to. Both the writing and the fluid watercolor illustrations reflect Dugan's sensitivity to emotions and attention to detail. Other kids who have endured a long car trip, an unwanted move, the dilemma of keeping a pet in a jar, or the pain of losing a confidant will find a certain resonance with Ernest P.'s experiences. Carolyn Phelan
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Book Description Greenwillow, 1993. Library Binding. Book Condition: New. Karen Lee Baker (illustrator). book. Bookseller Inventory # M0688108377