Monday, March 21, 2011
All the Way to America
All the Way to America: The Story of a Big Italian Family and a Little Shovel
Knopf Books for Young Readers, 2011. Unpaged. Biography/picture book.
Because this heart warming picture book is tucked in on the biography shelf, you might miss it. It simply and sweetly tells the story of illustrator Dan Yaccarino's family, beginning with his great-grandfather, Michele Iaccarino. Michele grew up in Sorrento, Italy, and helped his parents in their garden with a little shovel his father has given him. As a young man, Michele leaves Italy for a better life in America. He takes with him the little shovel, a few photographs, his mother's tomato sauce recipe, and the advice of his parents: to work hard, to enjoy life, and to never forget his family. Each succeeding generation passes on the little shovel, and also passes on the traditions of working hard, enjoying life and loving their families. Now Dan's children use the shovel to help him and his wife garden on their small terrace. The stories of each generation are accompanied by colorful illustrations that will appeal to even very young children, and this is a great book to spark interest in family history for readers of any age.