The Treasure (Sunburst Book)

by Uri Shulevitz

Other authorsUri Shulevitz (Illustrator)
Paperback, 1986



Local notes

398.2 Shu




Square Fish (1986), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 32 pages


A retelling of the traditional English tale in which a poor man follows the advice of his dream and is eventually led to a treasure.




Original publication date


Physical description

32 p.; 8.94 inches

User reviews

LibraryThing member conuly
I really like the illustrations in this book. They are neither too simple nor too complex.

And I like the style of this book, a direct, straight-forward storytelling.

I'm not sure I like the story itself, though I can't put my finger on *why*, exactly. It isn't all that compelling to me or my nieces
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(5 and 2.5), anyway.
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LibraryThing member KaseyDawson
The Treasure
By: Uri Shulevitz

Summery: A very poor man named Isaac has the same dream three times. In his dream, a voice tells him to go to the capital city and look for treasure under a bridge by the royal palace. The third time he is determined to see if his dream is true, Isaac sets out on a
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long journey. When Isaac reaches the bridge by the royal palace it is guarded day and night. He did not search for the treasure but, he returned to the bridge every morning and wandered around until dark. On day, the guard asks why he is there. Isaac tells the guard of his dream and the guard laughed. The guard told Isaac of a dream he once had. The guard tells him to look for the treasure in the town he just came from under the stove of a man named Isaac. Isaac had a long journey home. When Isaac got home, he dug under his stove, and found the treasure. Moral of the story: Sometimes one must travel far to discover what is near.

Personal Reaction: I loved this story! Its illustrations are beautiful and it has a great message.

Classroom Extension Ideas: I would talk to the students about following their dreams, even when the journey is hard, never give up. I also think it would be a lot of fun to have students go on a treasure hunt of their own.
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LibraryThing member wturnbull06
This book is a good example of a legend because the man in the story goes on this journey because of a dream he has even though it might be nothing and is rewarded in the end for taking a chance. In the end a lesson or moral is revealed.
Characterization: Isaac is a dynamic character because he
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changes from being poor and lonely and unsure about fallowing his dream to taking the journey and having his life changed for the better.
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LibraryThing member roethkegrrl
In this Caldecott Honor Book, Uri Shulevitz tells the story of a poverty-stricken old man, Isaac, whose recurring dream compels him to seek a treasure in a far-off city. Isaac eventually relents and sets off to search for this treasure. When he finally reaches the city, the information he gathers
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points him right back where he came from. He eventually discovers a treasure—literal and, it can be argued, figurative— when he returns home, building a house of prayer to share both his gratitude and the lesson that you may have to “travel far to discover what is near.” The Treasure explores numerous themes that can be taken literally and figuratively: the concept of following one’s dreams, the idea of finding what one seeks (treasure) in one’s own home, the concept of traveling away in search of what has been nearby/inside all along. The prayer house, message of gratitude, and idea of a search for answers/meaning lend religious overtones to the story. Very young children may not fully grasp the meaning behind the story, but are likely to enjoy the main plotline and colorful illustrations.
Librarians could use this book in various activities and discussions with young children. The themes of treasure, following dreams and going on a journey provide opportunities for imagination and creativity, while the message of giving back and using gratitude as a reason to share can support moral discussions. As a Caldecott book, it is a solid choice for children’s collections, and is regarded by many as a children’s classic.
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LibraryThing member didaly
Almost perfect in its simplicity, the journey of the old man presents the world as a conquerable challenge in an appealing place. The theme of trusting one's own experiences and dreams rather than what others say plays out in adult characters for once, their moustaches saying at least as much as
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the words.
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LibraryThing member barefootTL
The Treasure – Uri Shulevitz
ELIB 530A LibraryThing Part C – Trsditional Lit. – Book 1
I discovered this delightful book years ago when I took my children to one of many trips to the library over the years. It tells the story of a man named Isaac (also my son’s name, therefore making it all
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the more endearing) who has a reoccurring dream in which a voice tells him to go to the capitol city and look for a hidden treasure under the bridge by the royal palace. After the third dream, Isaac heeds the voice and embarks on a long journey to find it. Once he arrives at the palace though he is not allowed entrance and so he lingers outside the door for a few days. Finally, a guard asks him what he is doing there and then he tells Isaac about a dream that he had once had that told him to go to the city Isaac lived in and looks for treasure under the stove in a house where a man named Isaac lived. So Isaac made the long journey home. Once there he dug under his stove and sure enough he found the treasure. Because he was so grateful, he built a house of prayer and put up an inscription that read “Sometimes one must travel far to discover what is near”. He lived happily and comfortably for the rest of his life. The watercolor illustrations in the book bring a beautiful visual simplicity to it that is complementary to the story.
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LibraryThing member raizel
Beautifully illustrated, quiet (terse) retelling of the story used by Rabbi Nachman of Breslau. A man listens to his dream and travels a great distance to a city. Once there, he waits; eventually a guard at a bridge shares his own dream that a treasure is buried in a house a great distance away.
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The man returns to the treasure in his home, builds a house of prayer, and even sends a jewel to the guard.

The journey there and back again, showing the same pictures in opposite order, demonstrates how outwardly nothing has changed, while we know that inwardly everything has. Rabbi Nachman's moral is that sometimes we have to travel far to find someone who can teach us what is already within us. I think the journey, the effort, the willingness to risk much based on very little and probably unreliable information, is important. Perhaps the journey, even without any treasure, is worthwhile in and of itself.

It is interesting that the guard, who also dreams of a faraway treasure does not act on his knowledge. In some other versions, he does not receive any sort of thank you. The story does not originate with Rabbi Nachman: see The Peddler of Swatham. Nor does it end with him: most of adventure stories of the journey or quest type have the hero traveling there and back again. Dorothy realizes "there's no place like home."
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LibraryThing member kimknigge
This is a great story that comes full circle as he follows his dream. I like giving the students the last line of this story and then have them write what they think are the beginning and middle. After they have written and shared their version, I read the book aloud.
LibraryThing member rturba
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Media: ink and watercolor or pastels
Characterization: Isaac is a round dynamic character. We know about his way of life and of his ideals, which he doesn't have any. However, he follows his dreams, literally, and changes his view of his situation through his travels.
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This book is a good example of realistic fiction because the situation of Isaac's poverty is very real and many children may empathize with it. However, the concept of finding a buried treasure under your stove, because of a dream that you had which led you to someone who had another dream about the treasure is completely fantastical. The story basically is an poverty stricken persons dream and therefore it is easily believable, yet unrealistic.
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LibraryThing member elpowers
Nice folktale- good read aloud, and colorful pictures.
LibraryThing member kidlit9
A poor man named Isaac dreams of a treasure under the bridge in the capital city and decides to pursue his dream.
LibraryThing member Nataliewhite88
I enjoyed reading this book, not just because the illustrations were beautiful and dreamlike but because the story itself is a reminder that love, happiness, and fulfillment can be found in unexpected places such as inside of yourself. This is the message that it could teach to children.
LibraryThing member dukefan86
I just reread this book, and was reminded again of how much I enjoy the illustrations, as well as the story. I always enjoyed reading this book to my 1st and 2nd grade students, and it's one of the few children's books I've kept from my teaching days.
LibraryThing member MSittig
This book is a mystery yet a treasure! The illustrations are showing readers the traditional Eastern European cities and countrysides in glowing colors. Isaac is determined to go find the treasure that appears to him in his dreams more than once. He sets out on foot and travels to a far bridge that
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guarded by guards day and night. The guard tells him if he could live his dream he would go and dig up treasure under a stove of a guy named Isaac. Isaac goes back home on foot and ends u digging up treasure under his stove. This book tells readers to just have faith and believe in yourself. Stay determined.
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LibraryThing member Whisper1
This 1980 Caldecott Honor book tells the tale of Isaac, who, living in poverty and need, heeds a voice spoken to in dreams Traveling far from his country side in the quest of finding a treasure under the bridge by the royal palace, Isaac learns a valuable lesson.

After a long, weary journey, Isaac
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does not find a treasure there and is told by a guard that perhaps he should return to where he came from and look for the treasure in his own home!

Returning, Isaac does just that, and lo and behold finds treasure!

The moral of the story is "Sometimes one must travel far to discover what is near."

Lovely images augment a lesson we struggle to comprehend.
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LibraryThing member Adrian.Gaytan
Good start book for early readers. Illustrations are very well done. Story of a man in search of a treasure from a dream he has and his journey takes across countryside. There is moral to story and requires some dialogue but definitely provides opportunities for discussion in class setting.
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Predictions, foreshadowing......what could be the treasure? Do we all have one? Do you we have to look for it. are some great questions to bring up.
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LibraryThing member Cheryl_in_CC_NV
Hmm. I have mixed feelings. If the message is in the moral, as stated, Sometimes one must travel fa to discover what is near," I think it would have been more effective to tell us a story of a greedy man who travels to find material wealth and comes home to find love and contentment. The emphasis
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on material treasure puts me off. But then again, maybe I'm missing something. The Jewish lesson plans I found online imply that the treasure is not material (even though Isaac subsequently built a house of prayer and sent a ruby to the Captain). Looking further, I see texts that use a simplified version of this story to metaphorically illustrate the proverb. The implication is that we're supposed to totally ignore the literal interpretation. Well, that seems a lot to expect from the target audience, to me. What do you think? I wish I could remember better the other version I read of this: I recall feeling less negative about it. I do like the illustrations, a lot. And I've liked several other books by Uri Shulevitz too."
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LibraryThing member librisissimo
Reasonable good telling of the old folk tale about priorities and values.




(62 ratings; 4)
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