Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 4 - 8Grades 2 - 5R3.48377

This beloved Newbery Medal–winning book is the first of five books in Patricia MacLachlan's chapter book series about the Witting family.

Set in the late nineteenth century and told from young Anna's point of view, Sarah, Plain and Tall tells the story of how Sarah Elisabeth Wheaton comes from Maine to the prairie to answer Papa's advertisement for a wife and mother. Before Sarah arrives, Anna and her younger brother Caleb wait and wonder. Will Sarah be nice? Will she sing? Will she stay?

This children's literature classic is perfect for fans of Laura Ingalls Wilder's Little House on the Prairie books, historical fiction, and timeless stories using rich and beautiful language. Sarah, Plain and Tall gently explores themes of abandonment, loss and love.

Read the rest of the Sarah books by Patricia MacLachlan: Skylark, Caleb’s Story, More Perfect than the Moon, and Grandfather’s Dance.

Hardcover, 64 pages
Published on April 25, 1985 by HarperCollins
ISBN-10: 0060241012
ISBN-13: 9780060241018
19 Book Reviews
  • daniel0613
    daniel06139 months55 stars
    I read this book in school. First I didn't know this book, but my teacher told me that this book is good, so I told my mom then she buy it for me so I read it all.
    • amxranthine
      amxranthine9 months55 stars
      it is a great book! i would honestly get it. if i were you.
      • goodbookgirl11 months
        This is a great book. It is about Anna Witting, & her younger brother, Caleb & how they meet Sarah, plain & tall. Even though Mama died several years ago, Anna can't help but miss her. Mama died the day after Caleb was born, & Papa doesn't sing anymore. Things start to change when Papa tells them that he put an ad in the paper asking for a wife. The children can't be more excited to meet Sarah Elisabeth Wheaton of Maine. Although she makes the prairie a little like Maine by teaching Anna & Caleb to swim in the cow pond, sliding down a dune of hay, & drawing pictures to send home, Anna & Caleb can see how much she misses Maine. One day, she rides away in the wagon & Anna & Caleb fear that they'll never see her again. But it isn't until Caleb & Anna get surprised that they discover how much Sarah loves them. SARAH, PLAIN AND TALL is a heartwarming story about life on the prairie---& love of family. I think everyone---even adults---should read this book. Patricia MacLachlan is a very talented author, but I think that SARAH, PLAIN AND TALL & SKYLARK, the second book in the SARAH series are the best books in the series. Enjoy a touching story.
        • kaerou1920
          kaerou1920almost 2 years55 stars
          Good book review. Very detailed, and gives good description, Well done!
          • 579almost 2 years
            I hated this story
            • salezyto-157667470811
              salezyto-157667470811about 2 years55 stars
              I recommend this book because Sarah is this girl who end up living with these people named Jacob Anna and Caleb and they lost there mom after Caleb was borne and she end up staing with them at the end. She lived buy the sea then at the parry and that why i recommend this book.
              • reader2009
                reader2009over 2 years55 stars
                This is a great book. If you like books like Little House on the Praire, or Caddie Woodlawn, you will enjoy this book a lot!
                • spacepenguin
                  spacepenguinover 2 years55 stars
                  This book was really good. I like that Sarah was going to have a wedding soon and become Anna and Caleb's new mom. This is a book about like family. Anna's mom had a baby. The next day after she had the baby Caleb, she died. They were trying to find a new mom, and they found Sarah. Sarah might be their new mom. Sarah came to visit for one month. At the end of the book, she "brought the sea," which was blue, gray and green colored pencils to Anna and Caleb. Sarah is from Maine, which is by the sea. At the end of the book there is going to be a wedding soon - Sarah and Papa's.
                  • jj512
                    jj512over 2 years22 stars
                    After the death of a mom a kind dad wants to start dating again. Sarah will come for 1 month to try their place out, but the kids are busy picking up all of the clues about if Sarah will stay or leave! I found this book plain because nothing big happened and it is a book made around no big action.
                    • Ericover 2 years
                      This is a amazing book