District Highlights

#FridayReads: Embrace what makes you different with Stumpkin the stemless pumpkin

Harry Hooge teacher-librarian Fiona Bisset recommends Stumpkin by Lucy Ruth Cummins, an endearing story for Halloween.

There is so much to love about this story! I was attracted to Stumpkin by Lucy Ruth Cummins as soon as I laid eyes on it. The vintage-style illustrations remind me of the books I used to read as a child. The limited colour palette make the gorgeous orange pumpkins jump off the page. The human characters are set in silhouette, as part of the background, so that the real focus is on Stumpkin and its “facial” expressions. At its heart, Stumpkin is the gently told story of how it feels to be left out and what it really means to be “home.” I highly recommend this book!!

Stumpkin takes place near Halloween, on a busy city street market with lots of other pumpkins for sale. Stumpkin really wants to be chosen and taken home to be carved into a jack-o’-lantern.  It becomes increasingly sad, as one by one, the other pumpkins (and even a warty gourd) are bought instead, and set in the windows around the shop.  Even though Stumpkin is “a handsome pumpkin, as orange as a traffic cone and big as a basketball,” no one seems to want a stemless pumpkin. Will Stumpkin find a home in time for Halloween?

The cover of "Stumpkin" by Lucy Ruth Cummins.

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