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Mountain Born (Mountain Born #1)

3.88  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,148 Ratings  ·  64 Reviews
Wolves, weather, a black lamb, a trusty dog all are part of Peter's life on a mountain farm. Prequel to A Place for Peter. Grades 4-7."
Paperback, 106 pages
Published February 11th 2005 by BJU Press (first published 1943)
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Switch! The Lost Kingdoms of Karibu by Karen  PrinceArtemis Fowl by Eoin ColferThe Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark TwainEnder's Game by Orson Scott CardThe Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
Best Books For and About Boys
52nd out of 204 books — 130 voters
Mountain Born by Elizabeth YatesThe Wheel on the School by Meindert DeJongLittle Pear by Eleanor Frances LattimoreMrs. Piggle-Wiggle by Betty MacDonaldFavorite Poems of Childhood by Philip Smith
Sonlight Core B Read Alouds
1st out of 17 books — 4 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,999)
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Apr 10, 2009 Josiah rated it really liked it
This is an extraordinary story, set in the sparsely populated mountains, of growing up and getting to know oneself and of real love for family and those people we would be lucky enough to call true friends. I can very much see how this was given a Newbery Honor citation in 1944, though it was certainly bad luck for Mountain Born to have been published contemporaneously with the classic "Johnny Tremain".
I highly recommend this lovely, tender story to anyone who likes books that are infused with
Nov 20, 2008 Laura rated it it was amazing
I finished reading this to my kids today. I cried.
Apr 24, 2016 Karol rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book for children, well-written by Elizabeth Yates, and beautifully illustrated by Nora S. Unwin. It was about a young boy growing up and learning both the pleasant and difficult aspects of raising sheep. The book rang true for me, based on experiences I had visiting my grandfather's farm as a child. (He had cattle, chickens and often a hog but had previously raised sheep as well).

I can certainly see why it was a Newberry honor book in its time.
Jun 11, 2012 Paul rated it really liked it
This book is such a simple one, yet such a profound one. In a day and age when life is fast-paced and so are the best-selling books of the day, it is nice to return to a book that is "quiet," as one reviewer noted. I loved this book for many more reasons though. This book brings me back to time spent on various farms (in Wisconsin, in Florida, in Indiana, as a child, as a married man, as a young father, and as an older father). This story describes a boy growing to be a responsible young man as ...more
Katrina Lantz
Jul 01, 2013 Katrina Lantz rated it it was amazing
I absolutely adored this simple, beautiful story. I read it as a bedtime story to my little boys who will never experience being a shepherd firsthand but, thanks to this book, received important life lessons all shepherds must learn. Most of the book is religiously neutral, but there's a part in the middle when the strong but silent Benj talks about the only book his family had growing up. It's very sweet and talks about the sheep and shepherds in the Bible in such simple terms. I was touched. I ...more
Apr 06, 2009 Acarrawa rated it really liked it
I liked this very much! Very descriptive and conservative. Includes allusions to and quotations from Scripture. It does end rather abruptly, leaving one with several questions. Well-deserving of the Newberry Honor it received.
Linda Lipko
Jul 05, 2011 Linda Lipko rated it it was ok
This gentle story of a boy, a lamb, love and loss, is a 1944 Newbery honor book. It is a light, delightful read.
Feb 12, 2014 Trace rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had to keep reminding Luke that he had started this book.... so I was surprised that he told me he gave it a 4 star rating. I'm happy he enjoyed it. The writing is beautiful and rich and there were so many little nuggets of wisdom nestled within its pages - wisdom that a momma is always happy to have her son reading. Here are a couple of examples:

" There are many things in the world. If we care for them all a little we won't feel the hurt too much when we part with one."

" A man must have a ca
Nov 13, 2008 Danielle rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sonlight
A truly beautiful book, and a tear jerker for any mom with young sons.
Apr 27, 2015 Karen rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jacob, ellie, mom
Mom's pick for read aloud time.
Apr 03, 2014 Ginger rated it really liked it
Another read-aloud with the kids. A precious story about a boy and his pet lamb/cosset. Even though the main character was a boy, my daughter loved this story (maybe because she is an animal lover). Also, the story brings to life the idea of Jesus as our Shepard (especially for "city" kids that have little to no knowledge about living on a farm and tending animals). Again, it was my daughter that put the two thoughts together and commented on it. A good book to read together as a family.
Bryan Stevenson
Mar 11, 2014 Bryan Stevenson rated it liked it
I loved The Journeyman by Elizabeth Yates, so I was really looking forward to Mountain Born. I think it was written for a younger audience. It doesn't have the conflict and drama that it needs to sustain interest. Yates' writing style is still eloquent and poetic. I love the allegorical phrasing, and the depiction of farm life from a young child's perspective. It had a great beginning and a great ending, which definitely made up for a slower middle. It is a good, quick, and clean read.
Jul 11, 2014 Melanie rated it it was ok
This book was short, (only 106 pages) but also really slow moving. It did illustrate the circle of life, and it had a good ending. My 6 year old was very bored. My 8 year old was able to follow the story and discuss it afterwards, but it was not a favorite.
This Newbery honor book takes us back to a simpler time when the days were endless and rife with chores on the farm. Peter, a small boy grows into manhood during the turning seasons and as he watches the beloved cosset that he brought back to life, near the end of her days, he is filled with love and contentment knowing that the cycle of life is a magnificent thing to behold.

Mountain Born is not the typical award winning book that today's young readers would find enjoyable, with its odd use of
Jan 09, 2016 Melissa rated it it was amazing
Read this book to my five year old son. It is a story about a boy growing up on a sheep farm and the relationship he has with the lamb he raised. Cute story with good life lessons.
Jul 03, 2014 Linda rated it really liked it
Shelves: homeschool
As one of our read aloud books for homeschool, the children & I all loved this book. The kids kept asking, "Is this a true story?"
Laura Grace
Sweet, old fashioned coming-of-age story about a boy born into a sheep-keeping family: the lessons he learns, especially from the sage farmhand Benj, are thought provoking. My kids are enjoying this, even with the quaint language. Great vocabulary-expander for kids.
Nov 19, 2013 Debbie rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2013
I read this as a possibility for the second grade class that I read to on Fridays. Since I am reading Where the Red Fern Grows to them now, I will not read this one. This book is written for younger readers to read alone rather than one to stretch their listening and comprehension skills. Oh, there are ideas that I would expand upon if I were reading this to my own children, but not others. Also, there is enough death in the book I am currently reading to them, the next book needs to be a little ...more
Apr 01, 2016 Laura rated it it was amazing
Read out loud to kiddos. Beautiful picture of our good shepherd and the love for his sheep.
Natalie Fullmer
Apr 23, 2014 Natalie Fullmer rated it it was amazing
Loved this book! It was our favorite this year as we always love animal stories.
Mary Elizabeth
Aug 19, 2014 Mary Elizabeth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
CS Lewis said that, "a children's story which is only enjoyed by children is a bad children's story." He was right. Mountain Born is beautiful, and I perfectly enjoyed it. *wink*
Carrie Cabell
Feb 18, 2015 Carrie Cabell rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sonlight
Simply, beautiful story of a family of sheep farmers.
Jul 24, 2014 Allyson rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sonlight-books
I loved this book. A wonderful story, beautifully written.
Penny Burkeen
Jun 26, 2014 Penny Burkeen rated it it was amazing
Such a sweet, sweet book. I read it to my children.
Apr 15, 2014 Sarah rated it it was amazing
Shelves: school
I have now read this four times, and still love it!
Aug 09, 2012 Archy rated it really liked it
This book is part biography of a sheep and part biography of a boy growing up into a good, kind young man as he takes care of sheep. The story is lyrical and calming. The conflict is mostly internal and resolved (except perhaps the death of the sheep-protagonist of ripe, old age at the end). You will inadvertently learn a lot about sheep and some about wool. I think this book gives a lot of insight into all the biblical references to God as our shepherd. Unlike many more modern Newberry Honor bo ...more
Lindsay Weston
May 24, 2015 Lindsay Weston rated it really liked it
Family read aloud
May 07, 2011 Lori rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a beautifully written book that I had never heard of. A Newberry Honor book from the 40's, it was on my daughter's read aloud list. It is a wonderful story! I thoroughly enjoyed it. I learned a lot about shepherding, which I believe was valuable in understanding better the illustration of Christ as a shepherd. The boy's coming of age story on a farm, and the family who guides him, and the sheep he loves was written in such lovely language that you rarely see. Well worth reading no matter ...more
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Elizabeth Yates, author of over forty books for children, was born in New York State on December 6th, 1905. Determined to be an author, she moved to New York City to launch her career. She worked a variety of jobs including reviewing book, writing short stories, and doing research. She moved to England with her husband and wrote her first book, High Holiday, based on her travels in Switzerland wit ...more
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Other Books in the Series

Mountain Born (3 books)
  • Once in the Year: A Christmas Story
  • A Place for Peter

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“Benj had once said, "A man must have a care to what he puts in his mind, for when he's alone on a hillside and draws it out he'll want treasures to be his company, not regrets.” 1 likes
“Martha looked at her son. So this was the beginning of growing up. This was where the road they had been traveling together first parted.” 0 likes
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