Pumpkin Island

Pumpkin Island


Written and illustrated by Arthur Geisert

A CBC “Hot Off The Press” Selection of October 2018

Arthur Geisert’s Pumpkin Island is the fantastical story of a real life town brought to a halt by a profusion of pumpkins.

Elkader, Iowa, is the perfect picture of small town life—that is, until the pumpkins arrive. One pumpkin? Fine. Two pumpkins? Okay. But with pumpkins growing around every street corner, and over every building, what’s a town to do? In these pages, Geisert imagines his recent hometown of Elkader overrun by the pumpkins that grow on Pumpkin Island, which sits in the Turkey River, right outside his kitchen window.

ISBN: 978-1-59270-265-7
12" (W) x 10.25" (H) • 40 pages • HCJ

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A CBC “Hot Off The Press” Selection of October 2018

"In an enigmatic seasonal story with threads of the magical, a rising river washes away a pumpkin, whose seeds sprout on a small island. As the vines grow, the pumpkins become ubiquitous in the streets of Elkader, Iowa. After many pumpkin desserts, townsfolk convert the gourds into boats and houses. Just as the pumpkins “became such a problem that people started carting them away to the abandoned stone quarry,” Halloween arrives. In a dramatic spread, night has fallen over the town, and the faces of the many jack-o’-lantern faces glow hauntingly. While the pumpkins may be gone for the season, Geisert suggests with a final flowering tendril, vines rarely keep to themselves." —Publishers Weekly

"Geisert's spreads offer readers detail upon whimsical detail, including a witch who walks calmly about and much rooftop tomfoolery.... Readers captivated by the understated silliness of the premise may find themselves imagining what their own neighborhoods might look like under similar circumstances." —Kirkus Reviews

”With detailed copperplate etchings first hand printed then colored with watercolors, this newly released title is a marvelous way to celebrate harvest season all year. And perhaps even plan a trip to the Midwest town that inspired it all.” —Miranda Rosbach, My Bookbloom

I like this strange, sprawling story, one that includes elements of the fantastical and magical, about a town overrun by orange…” —Julie Danielson, Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast

After a treacherous storm brings pumpkins crashing into a small island, they begin to sprout and take root, finding their home in unusual places around the town of Elkader, Iowa. The townspeople find various ways to play, create, and celebrate the growing population of pumpkins, leading up to the largest Halloween Jack-o’-lantern celebrations ever! Pumpkin Island highlights the real events and celebrations on each page with copperplate etchings and hand-painted watercolors that bring color and life to the story of Elkader.” —Samantha D’Acunto, LuEsther T. Mertz Library, New York Botanical Garden

A fantastic amusing tale for this season and beyond from the incomparable Arthur Geisert.” —Michelle Sterling, Avery and Augustine

A perfect read for Halloween by the inimitable Arthur Geisert.” —Sarah Yewman, Picture Books Blogger

Readers will get a kick out of this ‘nature gone wild’ story, which pairs nicely with Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs. It’s a short, simple story with a touch of fantasy and humor that will get kids giggling. The artwork bustles across each spread to give the feel of a busy town trying to accommodate all of these pumpkins!” —Rosemary Kiladitis, Mom Read It


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