Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 4 to 7
- Grade: k to 2
When the rocking horse is first given to his boy, they imagine grand adventures together: chases in the wild west, dashes across medieval drawbridges, and daring rodeo performances. Then as the boy grows up, they play together less and less. The rocking horse begins to despair until the boy’s little sister climbs on his back and he learns he has love enough for more than one child. But one day she too will outgrow their adventures. What future awaits a treasured toy with so much love left to give?
In The Rocking Horse, award-winning author Sheryl McFarlane celebrates the imaginative play of childhood while acknowledging that growing up means reaching out and also letting go. Award-winning illustrator François Thisdale’s distinctive art captures the warmth of nostalgia and the brightness of possibility. The rocking horse, like any truly treasured toy, brims with both in equal measure.
About the authors
Sheryl McFarlane was born in the Ottawa Valley and was raised in Arizona, but the west coast snatched her heart more than thirty years ago. She is the mother of three wonderful daughters who often appear in her books in disguised form. She is the author of four board books and eight picture books, including: A Pod of Orcas, This is the Dog, Jessie's Island and Waiting for the Whales.
Sheryl's books have won and been short-listed for several readers' choice awards, the Governor General's Award, the IODE Award, the BC Book Prize for Children's Literature, and the Mr. Christie Award. Sheryl has toured with the Peter Gzowski Golf Tournament for Literacy, Save the Children, and The Canada Council. She has judged creative writing for The Writer's Union of Canada, The Canadian Children's Book Centre, and the BC Creative Writers' Grant Program, been a writer in residence in many schools, been involved in many young author programs, and has led children's writing workshops for beginning and established writers.
A former teacher, Sheryl provides professional development in language arts for school districts, Early Childhood Educators, Primary Educator Associations and the International Reading Association. She frequently acts as a consultant for publishers on both educational and trade projects. Her first young adult novel was published in the fall of 2006.
L’œuvre de François Thisdale mélange les techniques traditionnelles et l’imagerie numérique. Il est l’illustrateur de The Stamp Collector, qui a été sur la liste d’honneur IBBY, That Squeak, un livre qui s’est mérité une mention d’honneur pour le prix IBBY Canada Elizabeth Mrazik-Cleaver et Missing Nimama, lauréat du prix TD de littérature pour l’enfance et la jeunesse. François vit à Montréal, au Québec.
François Thisdale's work blends traditional drawing and painting with digital imagery. He is the illustrator of The Stamp Collector, which is on IBBY Honor List, That Squeak, an honour book for the IBBY Canada Elizabeth Mrazik- Cleaver Picture Book Award, and Missing Nimama, winner of the TD Canadian Children’s Book Award. François lives in Montreal, Quebec.