Pumpkin Island by Arthur Geisert

 Pumpkin Island by Arthur Geisert
Published by Enchanted Lion Books
Purchased from Barnes & Noble

Pumpkin Island is yet another wonderful, magical picture book by Geisert created from copperplate etchings that were first hand printed, then hand colored using watercolor. Always imaginative and possessing an understated sense of humor, Geisert's stories and illustrations keep small town, rural American life alive on the pages of his picture books like no one else. 

When a storm washes a pumpkin from its patch, down the river and onto an island in a river near a bridge in a small town, exciting things happen. A new pumpkin grows on the island and soon vines are stretching across the river and into town where more and more pumpkins begin to grow. As the town fills up with pumpkins the townsfolk come up with an abundance of creative ways to use them, starting by lining them atop the buildings of main street then tossing them off. Catapults come into play as the pumpkins proliferate. While there are kids in the book, it is mostly adults on the page turning the bigger pumpkins into coracles and counterweights. Soon enough, Halloween arrives and the townsfolk carve the many, many pumpkins into jack-o-lanterns, the town holding its biggest celebration ever, long into the night. Afterwards, the vines are cut and the pumpkins are turned into mulch and the "following spring, the flowers were more beautiful than ever!"

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