Cover of The Giant's Farm by Jane Yolen

Giant’s Farm, The

The 1970’s was a time of a great upsurge in children’s publishing, and everyone was trying easy readers. This little book–and its sequel THE GIANTS GO CAMPING–were both my entry into that particular genre. The five giants live on Fe-Fi-Fo-Farm which is what I wanted to call our farm when we first moved here. (We ended up naming it Phoenix Farm, but at the urging of my children, I used the other name in a book!) Tomie’s pictures manage to look like–Tomie! But the characters are really a metaphoric Yolen-Stemple family.

The paperback edition was done as part of a marketing study to see if certain children’s books could be sold in drugstores and supermarkets like stockings. The Haynes people developed this line; they decided that a million copies was not worth their while. There was little or no money for the author and illustrator. It was–after all–a test.

What reviewers have said:

  • “Yolen’s easy-to-read storybook is easy to take, an infectiously giggly collection of five tales about five giants. . .a natural to seduce  beginners into the world of books.”–Publishers Weekly
  • “Expertly written. . .”School Library Journal
  • “A quiet  story about sharing and living together as a family. De Paola’s illustratins accurately capture the different giant personalities.”–Association for Childhood International
  • “The modest yet hilarious episodes are almost perfect for the beginning reading crowd. And the bon-bon recipe is really good-good.”–Dallas Morning News
  • “Whimsical. . .”–Booklist