The Very Hungry Caterpillar

 The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle cover, a large green caterpillar with a red face

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

Written by Eric Carle

New York, World Publishing, 1970

12" x 8.5"

Kerlan Collection, Children's Literature Research Collections

University of Minnesota Libraries

Like the caterpillar in the story, this well-loved picture book underwent a major metamorphosis, having begun life as a manuscript of uncertain promise titled "A Week with Willi Worm." Eric Carle was a successful commercial artist when he decided, in midlife, that he would rather make picture books than ads for pharmaceutical companies. Carle, like his friend and one-time mentor Leo Lionni, approached the picture book as a playground for graphic experimentation, as a chance to "squeeze as much as possible out of the paper." As he once told an interviewer, "That is how the designer in me came to do holes."


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My Very First Book of Numbers by Eric Carle cover, seven strawberries in a row

My Very First Book of Numbers

Written by Eric Carle

Thomas Y. Crowell Company, New York, 1974

5" x 7"

Kerlan Collection, Children's Literature Research Collections

University of Minnesota Libraries