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Extra Yarn

4.06 of 5 stars 4.06  ·  rating details  ·  9,846 ratings  ·  1,080 reviews
This looks like an ordinary box full of ordinary yarn.

But it turns out it isn't.
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published January 17th 2012 by Balzer + Bray
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Extra Yarn by Mac BarnettAnd Then It's Spring by Julie FoglianoGreen by Laura Vaccaro SeegerThis is Not My Hat by Jon KlassenThe Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore by William Joyce
2013 Mock Caldecott
1st out of 97 books — 239 voters
I Want My Hat Back by Jon KlassenExtra Yarn by Mac BarnettThe Day the Crayons Quit by Drew DaywaltTuesday Tucks Me In by Luis Carlos MontalvánSophie's Squash by Pat Zietlow Miller
Favorite MODERN Picture Books
2nd out of 302 books — 114 voters

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Community Reviews

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I love everything about this book. Everything.

Annabelle lives in a cold, colorless town where everything is covered with snow and soot. One day, she comes upon a box of colorful yarn, and knits herself a sweater. When she's finished, she knits one for her dog. When she's finished with that, she still has extra yarn. In fact, Annabelle's colorful yarn seems to be never-ending, and she knits and knits and knits until her town and all the people in it are adorned with Annabelle's colorful creation
Lisa Vegan
I chuckled, I smiled, and I was touched. I wasn’t that fond of the last few pages. I think the story was going along fine as it was, but overall I still really enjoyed the book.

The story was fun. It’s a sweet and very amusing story. I loved Annabelle and her dog Mars. Mars caught my attention right away. I love Annabelle’s expression of independence and her self-assuredness, and her generosity. I love the wackiness that’s present throughout the story.

I loved, loved, loved the artwork for this b

This book is adorable. Also, this book is clearly part of a conspiracy to make knitters make tons of stuff for other people who don't knit. It is known.

Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett reads like an old school fairy tale or legend. A magical story spun with quirkiness and quiet humor.

Annabelle finds some extra yarn in a box, so she knits, knits, and knits sweaters and more for everyone in and around her town. She gives and gives. Decorates and decorates. Smiles and smiles. The yarn box is never empty. Is it magic? Is it a trick? Is it true? You decide.

Jon Klassen’s illustrations complement Annabelle’s adventures in yarn perfectly. Bringing the yarn c
Sarah Sammis
Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett is illustrated by Jon Klassen, the author of I Want My Hat Back and This is Not My Hat (review coming). For fans of Klassen's books, there's a cameo tucked inside.

Annabelle finds a box of yarn. It's the most colorful thing in her dreary village — a place that reminds me of the painting Jagers in de Sneeuw (1565) by Pieter Bruegel. Just imagine that snowy landscape filled with Klassen's characters, being slowly but surely covered in knitted sweaters and blankets and what
Rating, 3.5


A warm story for the little ones.

You sure can do a lot with some extra yarn. Even I felt a little warmer reading it the other day, despite the out-of-season cold wind blowing outside.

Lovely and short (duh, it's for little children). Written by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Jon Klassen (he of the delightful I Want My Hat Back ... I would recognize that bear everywhere.
Dec 08, 2012 Dolly rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is an unusual, but magical story about a little girl who brings a bit of color and warmth to her world. Everywhere the little girl went, she met with scorn and adversity, but she unwaveringly persisted, always with a contented smile. Our girls loved that they recognized Jon Klassen's illustrations by the image of the bear from I Want My Hat Back, and yes there was even a bunny rabbit. Overall, this is a simple, but charming story and we really enjoyed reading it together.

This story was sel
Patricia Storms
An amazing story about the power of creativity, yes, but there is much more to this magical book. It's also about letting your own lovely light shine, regardless of the the cynicism & negativity of others. And be aware – there will be those who covet your light, and who will do what it takes to steal, control or crush it.

This book is about staying true to one's beliefs, & quite frankly, not 'letting the bastards get you down'. Yes, the art is astounding, but it's the message of the story
Interesting concept! Loved the illustrations--while they might not normally be my cup of tea, they worked really well here showing how a bleak, dark town is transformed to warmth and color by the girl's kindness and the magic of the yarn.
Imagine the positive influence one person can have over a place if their intentions are pure. How much good can one person do when they seek to make the place they live in better and when they seek to do so one person at a time. This is exactly what Annabelle sets out to do when she finds what seems to be an ordinary box filled with ordinary yarn. Once Annabelle knits herself a sweater she finds there is extra yarn, she then knits Mars, her dog, a sweater, and from here the story takes off. Anna ...more
Summary: With a supply of yarn that never runs out, Annabelle knits for everyone and everything in town until an evil archduke decides he wants the yarn for himself.

This is the second time that I have taken this book out of the library and read it, and I am still a little mystified. The story itself is like a folktale. There is good and evil, a heroine, magic, etc. But the execution is lacking. There is really no driving problem, so the "resolution" is weak. The moral is to be happy with what y
I've never knitted anything in my life. Not a thing. The extent of my self-crafted wardrobe is limited to ironing letters on a t-shirt, which I promptly threw on stage at a concert (don't worry, I had another shirt underneath). But I would imagine there's a lot of satisfaction in creating an item of clothing out of nothing and a ball of yarn. Of fabricating something, however minor. This concept of making an impact on the world, one small piece at a time is at the core of Extra Yarn. Full of bea ...more
Extra Yarn, written by Mac Barnett and illustrated by Jon Klassen, is a fun picture book that tells the story of a young girl, Annabelle, and the events that happen when she discovers a box filled with yarn. The box Annabelle finds is filled with yarn of every color and seems to never run out. Annabelle begins to knit sweaters for herself, her dog, classmates, neighbors, friends, and even objects that don’t need sweaters—such as trees and houses. Eventually, word begins to spread about the girl ...more
Randie D. Camp, M.S.
Annabelle lives in a small town where everything is dull and everyone is more-or-less the same...until she finds a box of colorful yarn. This yarn is colorful and soon attracts attention but Annabelle is never discouraged or greedy, she just continues to knit with her colorful yarn.

I adored this book. The message is empowering but it is not preachy, the story unfolds in a natural, witty way that readers of all ages can understand and enjoy.
A charming story of a little girl who finds a never-ending box of yarn and decides to knit garments for everyone and everything. I loved Jon Klassen's clever watercolor illustrations.
Alethea A
LOVE it. I spent 12 hours trying to figure out how to draw yarn but it didn't look like this. I would totally move to this yarn-surplussed town!

4.5 stars. Love the old story new again, the art, and as a knitter, the never-ending yarn box, which resembles my own sewing room.
David Schaafsma
2013 Caldecott Honor Book I read because I am a fan of Barnett and Jon Klaasen's teamwork on Sam and Dave Dig a Hole. Feels fresh and inventive and surprising, with a strong and generous main girl character who knits sweaters and hats for everyone she knows, then buildngs, animals, houses, cars, and so on, drawing yarn out of a kind of magic box that gets explained (sort of, and satisfactorily, for me) in the end. She won't sell the yarn for ten million. Knitting stuff for other people is good, ...more
Clare Cannon
A colourful, quirky story about a girl who finds a ball of yarn that never seems to run out. She knits jumpers for herself, her family and friends, her animals, and even for cars and houses, but still there is extra yarn. When a greedy man tries to buy the yarn and is refused, he resorts to stealing it. But once it is stolen, it suddenly stops its supply and vanishes completely. Though the man curses the girl, his curse doesn't seem to effect her and she remains happy with all her knitted goods ...more
PAPER CUTS. I'm not surprised I love this, because It's Jon Klassen and I absolutely fangirl over all his illustrations, but honestly... I loved this.
**** Caldecott Honor (2013) ****

Delightful story about a girl who brings color and warmth to a rather dreary and cold place and it's townsfolk. I very much liked it.
This is a gem! Great pacing, great phrasing in the text. Fabulous use of color. Loved the detail that had so many sweaters connected by one yarn as she knit one right after the other. My daughter loved catching sight of the "I want my hat back" bear. And I really really loved that the duke's curse didn't need to be broken, because it just never stuck in the first place.
Sami Voshell
Text to Self: I connected to this story right away because I also like to knit and crochet. I also often make crochet or crafted gifts for friends and family, so I connected to the girl's desire to make sweaters for everyone and everything in her community.

Text to Text: I almost instantly thought of The Giving Tree when reading this title. They both have the underlying connection of selfless giving. The little gril in Extra Yarn knits a sweater for anyone and anything because they ask her. Simil
This book is about a little girl named Annabelle. She lives in a cold, black and white world. One day she comes across a box of yarn. She knits herself and her dog, Mars, a sweater. When she finishes, she still has extra yarn. She knits her mom, dad and friends sweaters, but she still has extra. She began knitting sweaters for objects that don't even wear sweaters, such as buildings, other animals, and a truck. The archduke offers Annabelle 2 million dollars for her box of never ending yarn, but ...more
Look for a guest appearance by Bear from "I Want My Hat Back."

UPDATE: At first this was a mild 4 stars for me, but after reading it at storytime and seeing how wrapped up the kids were...
Everyone even clapped at the end!
Apr 02, 2015 Brenda rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: meh, okay
Interesting concept but it lacks something.
This was adorable, funny and magical story.

Annabelle is a wonderful character and I love how she just continued knitting, making her town from drab and gray to alive and colourful. Instead of keeping it all to herself, or selling it, she kept it and cared more about her town and the people in it.

The last few pages were interesting, and I like the twist, but I think it would have been better had we not had it. I can imagine why it was added though. So we would know the secret of the box. However
CLN - Caldecott possibility #2!

When I read "Extra Yarn," I had no idea that it was illustrated by the same illustrator who did "A House Held Up by Trees." As I read the first page, I thought, "Hmmm...These illustrations are so similar to 'A House Held Up by Trees...'" They are sparse, cold, somewhat sad, and mostly colorless at the beginning. In both of these picture books, Klassen's illustrations definitely set the tone for the book. I am reading this book for the Children's Literature Network
Crystal Bandel
Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett, illustrated by Jon Klassen, published 2012.


Picture book.

Pre-K to grade 3.

Found via Booklist, reviewed by Ann Kelley.

Annabelle's town is colorless and boring, until Annabelle discovers a box with colorful yarn in it and begins knitting sweaters for everyone (and everything) in town. The others in town are skeptical at first, until Annabelle wins them over with sweaters, and eventually Annabelle's yarn captures the attention of an evil archduke who steals it away
It was a colorless wintry world “where everywhere you looked was either the white of snow or the black of soot from chimneys,” before a resourceful young girl Annabelle finds a box of yarn and begins to knit. She knits a colorful sweater for herself, then her dog, then her family members, community members, animals, and community objects and before long the wintry world is awash with color. One day an evil Archduke arrives upon the shore to purchase this box and Annabelle refuses to sell, but wi ...more
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Born to non-farmers in a California farming community, Mac now lives near San Francisco. He's on the board of directors of 826LA, a nonprofit writing center for students in Los Angeles, and he founded the Echo Park Time Travel Mart, a convenience store for time travelers.
More about Mac Barnett...

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