A House That Once Was by Julie Fogliano

A House That Once Was

Deep in the woodsis a housejust a housethat once wasbut now isn’t a home.Who lived in that house? Who walked down its hallways? Why did they leave it, and where did they go?Two children set off to find the answers, piecing together clues found, books left behind, forgotten photos, discarded toys, and creating their own vision of those who came before.

Details A House That Once Was

TitleA House That Once Was
Release DateMay 1st, 2018
PublisherRoaring Brook Press
GenreChildrens, Picture Books, Poetry

Reviews A House That Once Was

  • Miriam
    Inside the houseit is silent but creaking.We're whispering mostlybut not really speaking.We whisper though no one would mind if we didn't.The someone who once wasis someone who isn't.The someone who once wasis gone.Two children explore an abandoned house in the woods, wondering where the inhabitants went. Given that the person's possessions were all left behind, most likely they died and had no loved once to notice, but this possibility is never ...
  • Betsy
    When I was growing up there was an empty house across the street. A melancholy, haunted structure that seemed to wear its sadness like a badge. No one ever moved into it that I can recall, and the neighborhood kids would attempt to conjure up ghost stories to match its tired visage. I never went in it. Never even peeked in the window, though I longed to. To a kid, an abandoned house is better than a snow fort, a play structure, or a climbing tree...
  • Hilary
    The illustrations were okay. The text felt forced and reminded me too much of other better books, The Green Ship and The Hidden House spring to mind, which covered the idea that a house stands, whilst lives end and move on much more effectively.
  • Diane
    This is another lovely children's book, found thanks to The New York Times' annual list of the best illustrated children's books.The story follows two children who find an abandoned house in the woods and sneak inside to look around. They imagine who might have lived there, and what happened to them. At the end of their day of exploration, they happily return to their safe and cozy home. The pictures are beautiful, and I loved the vibrant colors....
  • Sara
    The overwhelming reaction every member of my household had to this book was a breathy and very pleased sounding,"gee that was nice."This is a sweet, just slightly mysterious story about two curious children and the long abandoned home they love to explore. There's just a touch of sadness and a twinge of loneliness ghosting through the pages but mostly its a quiet meditation on memory and an ode to the wonder of a child's imagination.Juli Fogliano...
  • Kaylin (The Re-Read Queen)
    Who gave a kid’s book the right so be so gorgeously atmospheric and charming?????
  • Laura Harrison
    I loved Fogliano's slightly overlooked yet perfect, When Green Becomes Tomatoes. A House that Once Was is a lovely poetry book. Poignant, quiet, atmospheric. Many discussions can arise as to why the house is abandoned. Lavish, scrumptious illustrations by the magnificent Lane Smith.
  • Kati
    a beautiful story about a house that once was a home. About the people who might have called its walls their own.Two children, exploring the forest, stumble upon a path. And down that path, overgrown, rarely trod, is a house.... falling apart, still housing the memories of the people who once called it home.Very whimsical. This story is permeated with a sense of wistful homesickness. Another good word for it would be Hiraeth: a wistfulness for a ...
  • Leonard Kim
    I wish I liked this better. The first stanza/spread is a home run. What I am starting to think after this book and her previous couple (When's My Birthday? and Old Dog Baby Baby) is that Fogliano is a real poet whose work may not be best served broken up across the pages of a standard picture book. I think the longer poems in When Green Becomes Tomatoes that could have gotten the picture book treatment were more effective the way they were, and I...
  • Earl
    I can't wait to share this book. Such a beautiful read. The rhythmic text will be perfect for read-alouds and bedtimes. It both soothes and creates a sort of mystery. The art builds upon the story. I love reading the media and style used for this. This book is meant to read over and over again.
  • Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
    Two children explore an old abandoned house they find in the woods and speculate on who once lived there and where the people went. The illustrations are pen and ink drawings with some collages of real objects thrown in.
  • Leslie Reese
    This gem struck me as a poetic meditation on what an abandoned house is: a place that was once a home. A place where people lived life, dreamed dreams, and made memories. It wonders what happened that its inhabitants have not returned? "And maybe the house is still waiting there for them.Waiting to hear their key in the door.Waiting for voices to bounce down the hallway.Waiting for someone to come sweep the floor.Or maybe it loves to just sit and...
  • Vicki
    I love this book. This is exactly how I feel when I see abandoned buildings and houses-who was once here and what did they do?The author does a great job expressing the “wondering” part of this story. The thing I wonder about is the lack of an adult with these children as this could be a dangerous adventure. I would hate to have children encouraged by this book to explore like this on their own.The illustrations are well done, just not my per...
  • Kelly
    The illustrations were okay, but very jumbled. The story was difficult to follow at times, and I tried to look at it through a child's eyes. It didn't go well.
  • Annie
    I do love the sad mysterious ones. Although I’m not sure I would have thought it was sad when I was a kid. This makes me think of my favorite Margaret Wise Brown books. I love the way Julie Fogliano plays with the poetic line, and how she dives right into the weird and unexpected stuff. And the illustrations are perfect. Just the right balance of beautiful and strange—and the imagined scenes being clearer and bolder than the images of the boy...
  • Rebecca
    Beautiful language by Julie Fogliano -- rhyming and not-quite-rhyming verse that begs to be read aloud. I can imagine having someone read this to me as a kid, and shivering with the mystery and possibility of exploring an abandoned house.Also note the unusual illustration technique by the always-inventive Lane Smith: “The illustrations in this book were done in two different techniques. The ‘present day’ illustrations were made with India i...
  • Sandy
    I liked this book as it allows children to use their imagination into the story as two children look inside an abandoned home. The story gives hints as to what might have occurred inside this house and the illustrations provide little details but it’s up to the individuals who are reading the story to put their particulars into the story.I like how this story is told. Using rhyme, a boy and girl discover the mystery house and its contents. They...
  • Traci
    Clever and thoughtful describe this lilting poem about a house that was once a home. Written by Julie Fogliano, illustrated by Lane Smith and published by Roaring Brook Press.#PB #poem #rhyme #mustread@JulieFogliano @LaneSmith @RoaringBrookPress
  • KC
    A boy and girl stumble upon an abandon house and imagine its former tenants. What I loved most about this book was how illustrator Lane Smith used two types of artwork to represent the past and present.
  • Manju
    I treasure Julie Fogliano' poetic phrasing combined with Lane Smith's India ink and oil paint illustrations.
  • Jeimy
    I am a lover of picture books and this one strikes the perfect balance between haunting and loveliness.
  • GooseberryCompote
    This teaches kids that history is way cool, and why old stuff matters.
  • Edward Sullivan
    A boy and girl explore an abandoned house, and wonder and imagine. Evocative, inventive, and quite stunning.
  • DaNae
    Beautiful, lyrical, haunting, hopeful. Fogliano hardly needed an illustration to put us smack in this setting. I still have goosebumps. (Smith's illustrations are, however, lovely.)
  • Jordan Henrichs
    I love Fogliano. This was great! It kind of went off the rails just a bit as the kids were imagining where the former inhabitants of the house have wandered off to, but it all comes together.
  • Nedra Isenberg
    This is a great book to use with students to get them thinking and imagining...I wonder... what if... I enjoyed the story and the illustrations.
  • Beverly
    Lovely musing text; beautiful, textured-looking collages.
  • Allison
    I have mixed feelings about this one. While the illustrations were dreamy and the words poetic, I question the ideas it may give children (and don't say they wouldn't get ideas - trust me, no biting books have inspired children to start biting!). I worry that some really imaginative kids might get the idea to go exploring in abandoned homes which is not only dangerous but could be illegal...
  • Allie
    Julie Fogliano has such a gift for poetic picture book writing! Much like When's My Birthday, this book is begging to be read aloud. I think it would be fun to read for a family program where we design or construct buildings.
  • Lauren
    Other people may not think this is sad but I do. It's gorgeous and sad and sad and gorgeous. "The someone who once was is someone who isn't. The someone who once was is gone."