Cover image for The range eternal
The range eternal
Erdrich, Louise.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Hyperion Books for Children, [2002]

Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : illustrations ; 26 cm
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 5.0 0.5 65198.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PIC. BK. Juvenile Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



In the thick of the Turtle Mountains, inside one family's little cabin, stood The Range Eternal. The woodburning stove provided warmth and comfort, delicious soups, and hot potatoes to warm cold hands on frozen winter mornings. It provided a glowing screen for a young girl's imagination, and protection from the howling ice monsters in the night. But most of all, it was the true heart of the home-one the young girl never knew how much she would miss until it was gone. Louise Erdrich is the author of many acclaimed and best-selling books, including The Birchbark House, a National Book Award Finalist. She is a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Ojibwa and lives in Minneapolis. Steve Johnson and Lou Fancher, an award-winning illustration team, have collaborated on many picture books, including My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss; Cat, You Better Come Home by Garrison Keillor; Horsefly by Alice Hoffman; and Robin's Room by Margaret Wise Brown.

Author Notes

Karen Louise Erdrich was born on June 7, 1954 in Little Falls, Minnesota. Erdrich grew up in Wahpeton, North Dakota, where both of her parents were employed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. She is a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa. Erdrich graduated from Dartmouth College in 1976 with an AB degree, and she received a Master of Arts in creative writing from Johns Hopkins University in 1979.

Erdrich published a number of poems and short stories from 1978 to 1982. In 1981 she married author and anthropologist Michael Dorris, and together they published The World's Greatest Fisherman, which won the Nelson Algren Award in 1982. In 1984 she won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Love Medicine, which is an expansion of a story that she had co-written with Dorris. Love Medicine was also awarded the Virginia McCormick Scully Prize (1984), the Sue Kaufman Prize (1985) and the Los Angeles Times Award for best novel (1985).

In addition to her prose, Erdrich has written several volumes of poetry, a textbook, children's books, and short stories and essays for popular magazines. She has been the recipient of numerous awards for professional excellence, including the National Magazine Fiction Award in 1983 and a first-prize O. Henry Award in 1987. Erdrich has also received the Pushcart Prize in Poetry, the Western Literacy Association Award, the 1999 World Fantasy Award, and the Scott O'Dell Award for Historical Fiction in 2006. In 2007 she refused to accept an honorary doctorate from the University of North Dakota in protest of its use of the "Fighting Sioux" name and logo.

Erdrich's novel The Round House made the New York Times bestseller list in 2013. Her other New York Times bestsellers include Future Home of the Living God (2017).

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

K-Gr. 3. Growing up in the mountains, a little girl finds warmth and comfort in the Range Eternal, an old-fashioned woodstove that her mother uses for cooking during the day. At night, the girl pulls her cot near the stove and watches the fire, feeling comforted by the heat and safe from the Windigo, the ice monster she imagined lurking outside her home. When electricity comes to the mountains, the stove is taken away. But as an adult, she buys an old Range Eternal to be «a center of true warmth» in her city home. The most memorable part of the story is Erdrich's clearly conceived, detail-studded depiction of the child's life. The textured artwork complements the sensitive yet down-to-earth tone of the text with lyrical, curving lines and forms in muted colors around the sturdy, well-defined figures of people, stove, furniture, and buildings. Although it may have more resonance for adults, children will respond to this vivid evocation of the past in rural America. Carolyn Phelan.

Publisher's Weekly Review

Erdrich (The Birchbark House) skillfully weaves family memories into a poignant and lyrical story of home and hearth. The symbolism may be more moving to adults, but the theme of family and preservation will resonate with children. A young mother relates how when she was a girl in the Turtle Mountains, a wood-burning, enameled stove ("The Range Eternal" emblazoned on the front) provided the family with good soup, warmth and protection. As she looks through the stove's window, the girl sees in its flames "pictures of long ago" that conjure up a range of another kind ("I saw the range of the buffalo... the wolf range and fox range.... I saw the Range Eternal." Johnson and Francher (New York's Bravest) suffuse their breathtaking paintings with light-buffalo and deer gallop in golden clouds across the landscape; in a later painting, the steam from a pot of soup curls through the afternoon sun as the young mother longs for a "center of true warmth" like that of her childhood. When she finds a stove just like her family's in an antique shop, she brings it home and teaches her son "to enter the pictures... to see... the living range restored." Erdrich skillfully works in homely details, crafting language both musical and evocative (the girl is "tucked into the stillness" on a winter night; the stove is the "warm heart of the house"). Sumptuous paintings of the plains and cozy domestic scenes combine with graceful language to describe the rituals that keep family and community together. Ages 4-7. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 4-In this evocative glimpse into the past, a narrator recalls the blue enamel stove of her childhood home in the mountains of North Dakota. Her mother cooks with one hand while feeding the fire with the other. A girl thaws herself by the stove after chores. Stones warmed in the stove keep feet cozy on winter nights; hot potatoes keep hands from freezing on winter walks to school. The stove offers more than heat. It provides light and comfort against night fears and casts shadows on the wall that turn into pictures of the plains long ago, thick with grazing buffalo. The raised lettering on the stove, The Range Eternal, provides an early writing lesson. Much is lost the year electricity comes down the road, and the enamel range is traded for an electric one. Years later, the nostalgic young woman finds The Range Eternal in an antique store and is able to bring her memories to life for her son and her husband. Dreamy illustrations in muted colors float across the pages with the texture of steam, wind, and shadows forming connections between past and present. This is a peaceful story of imagination, memories, and the ties among generations.-Susan Oliver, Tampa-Hillsborough Public Library System, FL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.