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Extra Yarn

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  18,661 ratings  ·  1,728 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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Average rating 4.05  · 
Rating details
 ·  18,661 ratings  ·  1,728 reviews

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Spencer Orey
Apr 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids-books
A sweet story about a generous girl who has a magical box full of endless yarn. She knits for her whooooole town! There's an unnecessary bad guy who nevertheless raises some good questions about how the magic yarn box works, but he's comical enough (an archduke!) that he isn't too scary and doesn't get in the way.

The art is lovely, with colorful yarn offsetting and enlivening a very gray world.
Jun 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: girl-power, kidstuff
Barnett presents a delightful tale yarn about the exploits of a young yarn-bomber.
(Psst- Jon Klassen's illustrations steal the show.)


Even more amazing to me than her never-ending supply of worsted is Annabelle's apparent speed-knitting ability.

Just look at all those yarn-covered structures!

And to think I still haven't finished the sweater I started back in 1986!
Annabelle finds a magic yarn box that never runs out of yarn. She lives in a drab little town where everyone is drab looking. She makes herself a sweater and it isn’t long before she makes a sweater for everyone. She still has plenty of yarn. Word gets out and people come wanting to see these wonders, even pirates who want to get the magic box. It’s a good ending.

I waffled between 3 and 4 stars. It’s an original story and I like that so I upped it to 4 stars. It’s original, but it is also simila
Oct 10, 2011 rated it it was amazing
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
Nov 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiber_arts, kid-lit

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.
Lisa  (not getting friends updates) 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
Mar 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books

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
Mar 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
Mac Barnett's Extra Yarn is in many ways a perfect story to share with children on a cold, blustery and sombre winter's day, showing simply, gracefully and with subdued emotionality that while Annabelle's lack of selfishness (how she knits not only for herself but for everyone and everything) always means she has extra yarn, as soon as the greedy archduke (after not being able to entice Annabelle to sell him her box of yarn) steals said box, the erstwhile always filled container becomes permanen ...more
Mar 18, 2012 rated it it was ok
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
Patricia Storms
Jan 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing
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 that re
destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
After reading several other Barnett/Klassen titles this week, I expected another humorous, bizarre, and fairly irrelevant (in a good way!) story, but Extra Yarn is actually entirely different! It's a really sweet, soft tale of a little girl who discovers fortune in a box of never-ending yarn, so she decides to use that yarn and knit sweaters for everyone and everything she meets. I loved the soft color palette and the ending, plus it was a great read-aloud title for story-time (as I've found eve ...more
Sarah Sammis
Jun 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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
Apr 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Dream team of Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen
Oct 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
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.
Dave Schaafsma
Aug 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picturebooks
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 she knits for buildings, 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 p ...more
May 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
so sweet, but that last page freaky
Mar 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
Mar 02, 2019 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Jon Klassen Fans
Prickly-penned children's author Mac Barnett, the creator of such hilarious tales as Billy Twitters and His Blue Whale Problem and Oh No!: Or How My Science Project Destroyed the World , and talented illustrator Jon Klassen, whose recent I Want My Hat Back was chosen as one of The New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Books of 2011, join forces in this new picture-book, which follows the story of a young girl who discovers a magical box of yarn one day. Knitting a colorful sweate ...more
Feb 10, 2012 rated it really liked it
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. ...more
Jul 05, 2015 rated it it was ok
Hey, it turns out Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen can do allegory quite well. In 2013, Extra Yarn was recognized with a Caldecott Honor citation, and I can think of few picture books that year which would have been much more deserving. Through the simple tale of a mystery box of yarn found by a girl with just the right mindset to use the box's contents for the utmost good, we see the impact our kindness and goodness can have on a weeping world. The generosity and benevolent intentions of a lone pers ...more
Jan 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2012
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
Clare Cannon
Aug 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 04-8yrs, 01-4yrs
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
Randie D. Camp, M.S.
Jan 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
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.
Feb 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
FREAKING ADORABLE! Someone recommended this to me months ago, and I thought it looked mildly interesting. But it's a sweet and beautifully illustrated story about a little girl named Annabelle (a name dear to my heart) who finds a magic box of yarn and begins to knit sweaters for everyone in her town. I mean, it's like this book was MADE FOR ME. ...more
Kaethe Douglas
Jul 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Klassen's art really makes the simple story come vividly alive. Just the book for anyone charmed by tree cozies or homemade sweaters. You don't actually have to make any. But if you think vests on penguins are cute, or legwarmers on tiny piglets, check it out.

Library copy.
Apr 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: juvenile
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. ...more
Jan 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing
4.5 out of 5
This looks like an ordinary picture book.

But it turns out it isn't.

It's EXTRA-ordinary.
Alethea A
Feb 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
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! ...more
Apr 28, 2012 rated it really liked it

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.
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Born to non-farmers in a California farming community, Mac Barnett 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

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