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New title, Fall 2018, with text and illustrations by Kristina Rodanas:
"HUCK'S WAY HOME", based on a true story on a Vermont farm.
Order your copy now.

Read all about it here and learn how you can meet Huck in person!
Stay at the nearby historic Woodstock Inn.
Read several reviews.
WOODSTOCK Magazine published an article, April 2019. See pg. 47.



Editorial Reviews

Huck’s Way Home is a picture book for everyone who loves animals. Kristina Rodanas’s luminous art and gentle, compelling prose glow with compassion. Little Huck’s determination will inspire both children and adults not only to be courageous, but also to learn from the wisdom of animals, and trust in the kindness of our beautiful world–a world more generous and gentle thanks to places like Billings Farm and Museum, where Huck really lives today!”

-Sy Montgomery, nationally-bestselling author of 21 books for adults and children including The Soul of an Octopus, The Good Good Pig, and How to Be A Good Creature

 “A thoroughly engaging animal tale that delivers a message of self-reliance with visual and narrative warmth. … Pairing her expressive text with beautifully rendered, realistic, double-spread and single-page illustrations in pencil and watercolor, [Rodanas] brings to life green Vermont landscapes, sunny and starry skies, and farm and forest creatures.” 

-Kirkus Reviews

“Huck has the Vermont spirit. This beautifully written and illustrated book should be in every school library for all to read and enjoy. Thank you Billings Farm for Huck and this story of Hope.

-Anson Tebbetts, Vermont Secretary of Agriculture Food & Markets

Huck’s Way Home is an endearing story that captures the serenity of Vermont’s rural landscape. Its beautiful art brings the characters and events to life, and it encourages us all to remember our agricultural heritage and to think about how the lives of animals play out alongside our own.

-Dan French, Vermont Secretary of Education

View a TV news story about Huck and the author

 

More titles by Kristina Rodanas you're sure to love!

  • Baby Flamingo copy
  • Bluebird-hut-raker copy
  • Drummer Boy copy
  • Elder and young indian girl copy
  • Kids with harvest copy
  • Leopard in tree copy
  • Many Animals copy
  • Putting on Feather Jacket copy
  • Tee Pees copy

 

 


Kristina Rodanas' Biography

When I was a little girl and someone asked the "what do you want to be when you grow up" question, I would proudly declare, "a cowboy!"  Secretly, however, I wished I could grow up to be a Native American "Indian." My dreams, of course, could not come true, but I have managed to weave my childhood fantasies into a career that allows me to live vicariously through the stories I tell and illustrate.  Best of all, my picture books have helped to bring alive the wonderful traditions of Native Americans, as well as the cultures and histories of people from all around the world.  

  As a child, art came easily to me and I remember illustrating stories for my elementary school classmates.  For a pencil drawing I charged five cents. A colored one was ten cents!  During my spare time, I wandered through the woods of New Hampshire hoping to catch sight of a fawn or a red tailed hawk.  Sometimes I would lie in a green meadow to listen to the hum of dragonflies and study the changing shapes of clouds.  

   Soon after I graduated from Boston University, I became an elementary school art teacher.  My work with children reminded me of what it's like to see through the eyes of a child.  Later, when I began to write and illustrate stories, I tried to use words and images that would interest children and, hopefully, encourage them to read.  I have always hoped that young readers will learn something from my books that they can apply to their own lives, so my book characters tend to find creative solutions to  their challenges.  Sometimes fixing a problem is not simply the result of magic, so the characters in many of my picture books including "Dragonfly's Tale", "Dance of the Sacred Circle", "Follow the Stars", and "The Blind Hunter" demonstrate how to work at making their dreams come true.  

To me, storytelling is an art form and illustration is fine art.  When I write for children, I try to  inspire emotional and creative responses to my words.  When I draw for children, I do much the same thing. I choose textures, lines, and color combinations carefully, and I show emotion in my characters through facial expression and body language.  My purpose is to create a "feeling" in the reader, something beautiful and lasting.  Recently, a young reader sent me a letter that said, "I can still see the pictures in my mind long after I closed the book."  

Many years have gone by since I was asked what it was that I aspired to be.  I have written and illustrated many stories for children, and many of my stories have been read by children in many lands. I still spend sunny afternoons gazing at clouds and take long walks through the woods and marshes of Cape Cod with my dogs (who often appear somewhere in my books).  I continue to imagine what it would be like to live in a Native American village of long ago or ride a winged horse through the night sky.  The difference is that now I can turn my daydreams into picture books and, thankfully, get paid more than ten cents to do so.

   Here is what some reviewers have said about my children's books:

    "Perhaps because Rodanas is not trying to revive archival material, but instead is inspired by her own love of the natural world, her text and artwork fairly dance with life.  The animals, trees, and grasslands vibrate with color and texture…"
                                                                                                                              -   School Library Journal

   "Kristina Rodanas's fine pencil on watercolor illustrations are in perfect harmony with her telling, and through their fluidity of line and form they bring out the bond which unites all forms of life."
                                                                                                                              -   The School Librarian (UK)

Read more reviews of books by Kristina Rodanas.

 

 

New England Illustrator & Author, Kristina Rodanas   •    KristinaRodanas@gmail.com
Selected original illustrations by Kristina Rodanas are available for sale on her companion website.