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Cress Watercress

Best Seller
Cress Watercress by Gregory Maguire
Hardcover $19.99
Mar 29, 2022 | ISBN 9781536211009

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  • Mar 19, 2024 | ISBN 9781536232479 | Middle Grade (8-12)

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  • Mar 29, 2022 | ISBN 9781536211009 | Middle Grade (8-12)

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Product Details


David Litchfield’s luminous illustrations beautifully flesh out these characters. . . Maguire’s descriptions of [Cress’s] dark moods, bursts of anger and fear that she will end up like her father are piercing and sensitively written. . . . the story strikes a resonant chord: Like Cress, we must all continue to seek pleasure and connections in a dangerous and uncertain world.
—The New York Times Book Review

Maguire’s narrative offers wry puns, rich vocabulary, and entertaining dialogue, and Litchfield’s glowing, slightly stylized, full-color illustrations present an enchanting, magical peek into this woodland world. . . . Warmhearted and utterly charming.
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

In this richly imagined woodland adventure, a grieving rabbit family—Mama, Cress, and baby Kip (with stuffed carrot “Rotty” always in tow)—must leave their comfortable warren to start over without their lost Papa. . . . Dark and shimmery full-color digital illustrations build on the text’s singular atmosphere. . . . With its brisk plot, witty details, and thought-provoking concepts, this gloriously illustrated chapter book makes an ideal family read-aloud.
—The Horn Book (starred review)

A hungry fox, a sneaky snake, a blundering bear, and “human beanpoles” add drama and suspense to Cress’ mini adventures, which are luminously depicted in Litchfield’s color illustrations. . . this novel of family and friendship will please fans of animal fantasies.

A surreal episodic narrative. . . . Maguire channels multiple children’s literary golden ages, with allusions to Beatrix Potter and Kenneth Grahame alongside nonsense notes of Norton Juster and Russell Hoban. Theatrical situations abound. . . . Suitable for sharing and reading aloud, this exuberant tale revels in the performative and the flavor of language.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

This coming-of-age story with a female rabbit as the main character will appeal to readers who enjoy gentle adventure stories with an emphasis on character development. . . . Themes of family, friends, relationships, and independence abound in this novel.
—School Library Connection

David Litchfield’s illustrations (see right) have such bright, glowing colors that even the nocturnal scenes seem bathed in light.
—The Wall Street Journal

‘Wicked’ creator Gregory Maguire offers a marvelously eccentric cast of animal characters and vivid poetry celebrating the wonders of the natural world in this beautifully written coming-of-age tale of a young rabbit. . . The glorious full-color illustrations, with the dramatic use of light reminiscent of the best movie animated classics, are by English artist David Litchfield.
—The Buffalo News

Charming. . . There’s plenty to chew on here, with Cress’ story never preachy but sure to resonate in all kinds of ways with young readers. David Litchfield’s illustrations — many full-page — glow with the colors of the forest and the faces of its critters.
—The Star Tribune

The book is rife with similes and metaphors, and the chapters are short, which makes it a wonderful read-aloud. It is a tale of moving on, while remembering the past.
—The Denton-Record Chronicle

Who knew that rabbits and squirrels had so much to teach us about both the hard and tender times of life? Gregory Maguire, that’s who. Cress Watercress is a clear-eyed lesson in picking up and moving forward, living with unanswered questions, and making new friends. I will recommend this beautifully written (and perfectly illustrated!) book to everyone.
—Ann Patchett, New York Times best-selling author of The Dutch House


Junior Library Guild Selection SELECTION 2022

Kirkus Reviews Best Book of the Year SELECTION 2022

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