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Sarah, Plain and Tall

Sarah, Plain and Tall

Series: Sarah, Plain and Tall (Book #1)
by Patricia MacLachlan

Caleb and Anna have been living without a mother for a long time. In fact, Caleb doesn't even remember Mama, who died a day after he was born. Anna tells him that Papa and Mama sang every day, and now Papa doesn't sing at all. To remedy this situation, their father places an advertisement in a newspaper for a mail-order bride to come live with them in their prairie home.

All the way from Maine, a woman named Sarah answers the ad. Caleb wants to know if Sarah snores. Anna wants most of all to know if Sarah sings. Sarah makes plans to arrive, and writes, "I will come by train. I will wear a yellow bonnet. I am plain and tall."

So the family waits. In the spring, she comes with her cat named Seal, gray like the seals that swim near her seaside home...and a sea stone, which she eventually gives to Anna. Jacob, the father, teaches Sarah some skills for the farm, like driving a tractor. Everyone hopes she will stay — most of all Caleb and Anna — but Sarah misses the sea, her brother and her three old aunts.

One day Sarah takes the wagon alone to town, and Caleb and Anna worry. What if she doesn't come back?

Newbery Medal Winner, 1986

Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction for Children, 1986

Ages
8, 9, 10
Interest Level
Grades 3 - 5
Grade Level Equivalent
4.2
Lexile Measure
560L
DRA
40
Guided Reading
R
Book Type
Chapter Book
Number of Pages
64
Genre
Classics, Historical Fiction

About the Author

Patricia MacLachlan An American author of children's picture books and novels for middle-grade readers, Patricia MacLachlan, b. Patricia Pritzkau in Cheyenne, Wyo., Mar. 3, 1938, frequently focuses her stories on the family.

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