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Into the Woods: John James Audubon Lives His…

Into the Woods: John James Audubon Lives His Dream (edition 2011)

by Robert Burleigh, Wendell Minor (Illustrator)

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11812102,161 (3.6)1
Title:Into the Woods: John James Audubon Lives His Dream
Authors:Robert Burleigh
Other authors:Wendell Minor (Illustrator)
Info:Atheneum Books for Young Readers (2011), Paperback, 40 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:nonfiction, biography, 40p, 900s, 500s, 2nd-8th, John Audubon, nature, birds, human spirit

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Into the Woods: John James Audubon Lives His Dream by Robert Burleigh



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The art by Minor tells more of the story than the text by Burleigh, I think. It's gorgeous. I think it's rather a shame it overwhelms the samples of Audubon's own work; I hope readers are inspired to look for more of those classic works. I definitely appreciated the sample of text from Audubon's journals... but it's a shame they were in a script my old eyes couldn't quite make out completely.

In any case, this book beautifully captures the essence of the man and his lifework, but it's not a real biography with enough detail for a school report or such. However, I do recommend it. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
This is a great book to read to my students about nature and its surroundings. This book is also about James Audubon which would be a great topic to talk about since we have a zoo that is named after him. I would make a lesson plan about things relating to Audubon and nature to help students get a learning experience of him as well as nature. ( )
  kdufrene | May 1, 2015 |
This book is about an artists who's dream is the paint the nature around him and everyday record in art form what he sees. He loves nature and just wants to share what he sees with the world around him. He wants to listen to the birds and feel the water and be one with the nature around him. Everyday he describes a different scene in nature that he paints and everyday he falls more in love with nature. ( )
  sarahetuemmler | Mar 9, 2015 |
This book is a dual text. One part of each page is an actual journal entry from Audubon, and the other part is the author's interpretation in poetry form. This book is an excellent mentor text to use when teaching primary sources as well as poetry. I am designing a lesson on primary source documents for social studies and will use this book as a model for my students. ( )
  kris0812 | Nov 24, 2012 |
It was not until recently when I realized that I thoroughly enjoy biographies where the person of interest lives out his or her dream and is successful in doing so. Although, this seems like a theme that is strereotypical of fictional literature and its heroes, it is the nonfictional tales of the human spirit that I find to be the most rewarding reads.

Robert Burleigh's book was just as gratifying. Besides the conventional biographical information Burleigh conveys about John James Audubon, I think the author makes a point to share with readers Audubon's determination to fulfill his dreams and passionate love for nature. This is most evident through Burleigh's use of poetry to supplement the primary source text. The poetry helps to immerse readers into Audubon's world, as with each line readers get a sense of explorer's feelings and intentions while experiencing nature.

Wendell Minor's illustrations compliment Burleigh's text extraordinarily well. I feel that Minor's intentions were to give readers a sense of Audubon's perspective of nature. Each picture is beautifully drawn and takes into account how the explorer may have actually experienced the scenes he describes through his journal entries.

The only qualms I had with the book stem from the stereotypical view I have of biographies. Though this book does a great job of giving readers a brief summary of Audubon's life and fulfilment of his dream, it does not attempt to be very accurate nor is it highly informative in terms of other aspects of the explorer's life. In contrast with another biography of Audubon's life, Burleigh's book would perhaps benefit from a map following Audubon's travels or greater details about his personal life.

On the other hand, this book is primarily concerned with sharing Audubon's dream with readers, and does an excellent job doing just that.

As I have already done in a practice lesson, I would use this book in an upper grade English classroom as an example of the successful use of poetic voice to convey ninfictional information. In lower grades, I can see this book being paired with other books about Audubon to produce multiple lessons on nature, poetry, exploration, and/or nonfiction. ( )
  dareone32988 | Nov 16, 2012 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Robert Burleighprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Minor, WendellIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0689830408, Hardcover)

As a young man, John James Audubon, the renowned American woodsman and artist, had to make a choice between following his father's dreams for him and discovering his own special destiny. In this beautifully conceived book, Robert Burleigh imagines a conversation in which Audubon tells his father why he has chosen to forgo the ordinary life of a shop-keeper and instead live out in nature to develop his art and his relationship with the world. Illustrated not only with sumptuous images by Wendell Minor, but with actual drawings by Audubon himself, this book will appeal to his fans of all ages.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:03:17 -0400)

Uses quotes from his journals to help explore Audubon's decision to follow his dream to paint every bird species in North America.

(summary from another edition)

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