Children’s Book of the Week: Adèle and Simon in America

by | May 4, 2009 | Children's Book of the Week | 2 comments

Adèle and Simon in America by Barbara McClintock

This is one of those books that should just have a sticker on it that says, “Julie! This one is a sure winner in your household!” It pretty much has everything the boys love in a book (though there are no dinosaurs or diggers). We’ve got:

  • maps. Adèle and her brother Simon have traveled from Paris to America to visit their Aunt Cécile, who takes them on a train journey across the country. We get to follow along on maps on the endpapers.
  • beautifully detailed illustrations.
  • lovable characters: Simon, who is dressed like a cowboy for the sole purpose of pleasing Eli, loses the majority of his possessions during the trip (causing Adèle to exasperatingly say, “Your things are scattered all around America!” which for some reason I find hilarious).
  • I Spy. As Simon loses his things, you can try to find each new lost item on the page. Some are pretty hard to find, and we had a great time searching.
  • Geographically facty tidbits. After the story, there’s a section that details every page in the book, what’s special about the location, and famous people that are thrown into the drawing for good measure.

We have also gotten Adèle and Simon out of the library, which is essentially the same exact book, except that it takes place in Paris. I like Adèle and Simon in America a lot better: we’re more interested in the U.S. geography, and I thought the story was better and less ridiculous.

If your kid is at all interested in maps, or likes I Spy books (or any book where you have to find something on each page), then this one will be a hit for you too.


  1. Anne

    Oh, perfect. We need a new “I Spy”-type of book. Sam is currently fixated on “Where’s Wallace?” and while I love it too, I need to mix it up a little before I go completely batty.

  2. Julie

    You’re going to love this one! The illustrations are great.


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