Dutton Children's Books, 1989 ERNST

Reissued by Tricycle Press in 2002


New! ERNST in Spanish and English, published  by Bab'l Books . Purchase here.


"What child or poet or artist could resist a story that starts 'Once upon a time,

in a world full of light, trees, bugs, seashells, birds, and night..."?

Busy little pictures sparkle, producing enchanted satisfaction....Older pre schoolers, particularly imaginative children, will love this book."  -- School Library Journal



"Kleven imagines an entire universe filled with sparkling pictures and sweet affection.  This small and beautiful book neatly reconciles the child's wishes with dreams fulfilled." -- Los Angeles Times

 Plush Ernst toy by Kathe Kruse, available through The Play Store

Ernst in Korean, Japanese and Chinese:

Below is an unusual  tribute to Ernst:  a tattoo worn by Caitlyn Post, who kindly wrote  "Thank you  for creating a character my weird little childhood self loved so much I had to get a tattoo of him twenty-something years later. Ernst has and will always have a special place in my heart (and now, my skin as well) for his endless questions and fantastic imaginings, and  I am so grateful for you bringing him to life and sharing him with the world."

And here are two quilts based on the same title page image from  ERNST, created by mother-daughter quilters Halli Kenoyer (top) and Aairyn Maxwell 

  The birthday-cake-Ernst below was sent to me by the mother of

a little boy who had made friends with the character.

And here is one more Ernst tattoo. It's always a great surprise and honor to see my book characters connecting with the lives  and imaginations of readers.