The Mitten: A Ukrainian Folktale

by Jan Brett (Author) Jan Brett (Illustrator)

Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade
In this bestselling modern classic, a young boy's lost mitten leads to a charming snowy adventure. Jan Brett's beautiful retelling has been a family favorite for over 25 years.

When Nicki drops his white mitten in the snow, he goes on without realizing that it is missing. One by one, woodland animals find it and crawl in; first, a curious mole, then a rabbit, a badger and others, each one larger than the last. Finally, a big brown bear is followed in by a tiny brown mouse and what happens next makes for a wonderfully funny climax. As the story of the animals in the mitten unfolds, the reader can see Nicki in the borders of each page, walking through the woods unaware of what is going on.

In her distinctive style, Jan Brett brings the animals to life with warmth and humor, and her illustrations are full of visual delights and details faithful to the Ukrainian tradition from which the story comes. 

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Publisher's Weekly

Baba, Nicki's grandmother, knits pure white mittens for him, even though she is afraid that he will lose them in the snow. Sure enough, the first time Nicki is out, he drops one and some animals promptly move into its snug wool interior. First comes a mole, then a rabbit, a hedgehog, an owl, a badger, a fox, a bear and, finally, a mouse. That mouse tickles the bear's nose and he sneezes, dislodging all of the animals at once. Nicki finds his mitten, and takes it home, but Baba is left to wonder about how it became so enormously stretched out. Brett's magnificent paintings feature her usual array of folk details, and this time, intricate knitting tracks, ornate embroidery, the crusty, peeling texture of the birch bark borders and the exquisite patterns found in Baba's homey rooms. Readers will sit back, suspend belief and welcome this tall tale from the Ukrainian tradition. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)

Copyright 1989 Publisher’s Weekly, LLC Used with permission.

Hornbook

Starred Review
Readers will enjoy the charm and humor in the portrayal of the animals as they make room for each newcomer in the mitten and sprawl in the snow after the big sneeze.

Review quotes



Classification
Fiction
ISBN-13
9780399252969
Lexile Measure
600
Guided Reading Level
-
Publisher
G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
Publication date
September 20, 2015
Series
-
BISAC categories
JUV012040 - Juvenile Fiction | Fairy Tales & Folklore | Adaptations
Library of Congress categories
Folklore
Ukraine
Mittens
Cumulative tales
Folk tales
Folk literature, Ukrainian
Elementary School Library Collection
2000 - 2000

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