Themed Reviews

Picture Books for Older Readers

Picture books for teens - no way! That may be the initial reaction, but take a look at some of the books we have identified as those that would appeal to older readers. They run the gamut from poetry, fairy tales, social issues to clever presentations to explicate literary devices.


Reviews

Aida
Leontyne Price
Illustrated by Leo and Diane Dillon
   What a fortuitous moment it was when Leontyne Price, the opera star, and Leo and Diane Dillon, artists, combined their superb talents to produce the lush Aida, one of Verdi's most exotic but tragic operas. The paintings are stylized but powerful in keeping with the Egyptian setting and the love and death theme. Listeners must hear excerpts of the opera both before and after reading this memorable book. 1997 (orig. 1990), HBJ, Ages 0 and up, $19.00 and $7.00. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 0-15-200405-X
ISBN: 0-15-201546-9

Amelia and Eleanor Go for a Ride
Pam Muñoz Ryan
Pictures by Brian Selznick
   In 1933 Amelia Earhart was invited by Eleanor Roosevelt to dine at the White House. The famous aviator and the president's wife admired each other tremendously. They were birds of feather, both stretching boundaries for women. To cap off the evening, they went for a night flight over Washington. Ryan, who wrote the evocative Riding Freedom, captures the moment perfectly in prose, while Selznick's pictures soar. His graphite and colored pencil renderings take over the pages in dazzling panoramas of Washington and the sky by night. The end result is a spectacular book which illuminates a snippet of history. 1999, Scholastic, Ages 5 to 10, $16.95. Reviewer: Kathleen Karr
ISBN: 0-590-96075-X

Autumn: An Alphabet Acrostic
Steven Schnur
Illustrations by Leslie Evans
   Exercise your senses by reading this descriptive collection of acrostic poems. The majesty of the fall season is celebrated through vibrant illustrations that perfectly complement each poem. The author explores the richness of the English language through intricate wordplay and creates vivid descriptions of many of autumn's most common sights, sounds, and yearly happenings. From dark evenings and leaves falling from the trees, the letters in each poem conjure images of this special time of year. Schnur's book is an excellent source for the teacher of creative writing. This is a wonderful introduction to the genre of poetry. 1997, Clarion Books, Ages 6 to 10, $15.00. Reviewer: Susan Hoyle Fournier
ISBN: 0-395-77043-2

Autumn: An Alphabet Acrostic
Steven Schnur
Illustrated by Leslie Evans
   Steven Schnur's poetic alphabet acrostics describe Autumn when, for example, "Little remains on/Each maple...and/Aspen tree; ...Vines have shriveled,/Ending another green/Season." Leslie Evans' hand-colored, linoleum-block-prints illustrate this inspiration for similar student word play-seasonal or otherwise. 1997, Clarion, Ages 8 and up, $15.00. Reviewer: Beverly Kobrin
ISBN: 0-395-77043-2

A Band of Angels: A Story Inspired by the Jubilee Singers
Deborah Hopkinson
Illustrated by Raul Colon
   Ella was born into slavery but "no one could chain her voice." Freed in adolescence, Ella longs for an education, and does all she can to earn money to attend the newly founded Fisk School in Nashville. When the school flounders, Ella and others in the chorus take to the road to sing their way to supporting Fisk. Travel is miserable, lodgings and restaurants refuse them and their renditions of popular songs fail to appeal to audiences. Saddened, Ella leads the others in singing hopeful spirituals, and their success leads the singers to tour the world and set a tradition of those who "keep the old songs alive." Ella Sheppard is the focus character in this story inspired by the Jubilee Singers. The effect of the singers on musical history is important, but so are the themes of education and how hard one woman works to attain it. 1999, Atheneum, Ages 7 to 10, $16.00. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-689-81062-8

A Band of Angels: A Story inspired by the Jubilee Singers
Deborah Hopkins
Illustrated by Raúl Colón
   Ella Sheppard was born into slavery, but when she reached fourteen, slaves were set free. She gathered what little money she had and headed off to Fisk School, a new school for freed slaves. Times were very hard, and the school was about to close for lack of funds. Ella had a magnificent voice and also could play the piano. Professor White, the music teacher, thought of a way to help. He would take his chorus, with Ella, on tour. However, it seemed that people didn't want to hear popular white songs from a black chorus. In despair one night, Ella began to play and sing one of the slave songs. The audience was mesmerized. From that night on, they sang spirituals, or jubilee songs-songs of hope and freedom. They became successful, traveled the world, and saved the school. While the tale is fiction, it is based on real events and would make a wonderful read-aloud in individual or group settings. Raúl Colón's recognizable watercolor and pencil art in warm browns and golds suits the period and mood of the story. 1999, Atheneum, Ages 5 to 9, $16.00. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-689-81062-8

Behind the Mask: A Book About Prepositions
Ruth Heller
   Similar in approach to other books that make up the "World of Language" series, Heller makes learning English grammar fun. She focuses on prepositions in this entry-a journey to the south "where mermaids flock upon, beside, and near a rock." That quote is a great example of three consecutive prepositions. Then, Heller offers a few rules: say different from, angry with "a person," and angry at "a thing." At the end of the book is a list of more prepositions to augment those sprinkled throughout the amusing text. The art in bright, bold colors and large eye catching images adds a light touch to what many kids might think is a deep, dark mysterious subject. 1998 (orig. 1995), Putnam/Paperstar, Ages 7 and up, $17.99 and $6.00. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-698-11698-4
ISBN: 0-448-41123-7

Big Jabe
Jerdine Nolen
Illustrations by Kadir Nelson
   Jabe is the larger-than-life hero of this original tall tale of life on the plantation in the days of slavery. Arriving magically in a basket floating on the river, he immediately seems to cause miraculous events, while in no time at all he does the ever-harder work set to the slaves. The wicked overseer resents the way Jabe makes their lives pleasanter. But each time he tries to punish one of the slaves, that slave is magically spirited away. Jabe eventually moves on, but everywhere he goes "burdens are lifted." This picture of plantation life puts reality next to the spirit of hope and freedom that burned within. Nelson's naturalistic colored drawings describe a rural South with lush fields, healthy animals, nasty overseer and kindly slaves. Even the few scenes of mistreatment are bathed in a romantic light that softens the evil. Although the text hints at some benign magic, only a scene of fish jumping from the river actually shows this. The scenes chosen from the lengthy text provide a real sense of place and characters. 2000, HarperCollins Juvenile Books, Ags 6 to 10, $15.95. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
ISBN: 0-688-13662-1

Bill Pickett Rodeo-Ridin' Cowboy
Andrea D. Pinkney
Illustrated by Brian Pinkney
   The first black rodeo performer was Bill Pickett who first wrestled a steer to the ground by sinkin' his teeth into the animal's lip when he was about 10. Bulldoggin', the cowboys called it. Bill learned to lasso and ride like the cowboys he'd seen on the Chisholm Trail. Soon he became so well known that he starred in the 101 Ranch Wild West Show. Bill Pickett, son of a slave, became the first African American inducted into the National Cowboy Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City. A picture book biography that will send readers on the trail of more information about African American cowboys. Scratchboard illustrations, hand-colored with oil paint, project a dynamic energy that enriches this story. 1996, Harcourt Brace, Ages 7 to 10, $16.00. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 0-15-200100-X

The Block
Poems by Langston Hughes
Collage by Romare Rearden
   Sections of Rearden's six-panel collage, "The Block," form the backdrop for twelve Langston Hughes poems celebrating the vitality of the culture that spawned the Harlem Renaissance. This is definitely a book that adults will need (and want!) to read with their children; the longer poems, in particular, contain difficult language, some mature themes, and images that may have to be teased slowly out of the text. But there probably are few more rewarding uses of your time than working your way through this magnificent book together with your child. Hughes is one of the finest poets of this century; these selections give a clear sense of his ability to capture the joys and trials of urban life. Rearden's Harlem collages are beautiful, complex, and provocative. 1995, Viking, Ages 12 and up, $15.99. Reviewer: Andrea Brott
ISBN: 0-670-86501-X

Bound for America: The Forced Migration of Africans to the New World
James Haskins and Kathleeen Benson
Paintings by Floyd Cooper
   The trafficking of slaves to the Americas for a period of 350 years that ended in 1850 removed millions of Africans from their homes. The history of slavery and the slave trade is accompanied by reproductions of artifacts, paintings, drawings and maps plus original paintings by Cooper. It is an excellent look at an abhorrent institution and makes clear that people suffered in ways that seem almost unimaginable today. They were not treated as human beings, but as chattel with no feelings. For those who endured, the Americas offered a new home and eventually freedom from the bonds of slavery. While presented in a picture book form, the material in this book and the first in the series, African Beginnings, is written for an older audience. The concluding pages contain an impressive section entitled "Milestones in the History of Slavery," a bibliography, and an index. 1999, Lothrop, Ages 8 and up, $18.00. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-688-10258-1
ISBN: 0-688-10259-X

The Bracelet
Yoshiko Uchida
Illustrated by Joanna Yardley
   Before Emi and her family leave for the relocation center at Tanforan, her friend Laurie gives her a bracelet, a symbol of their friendship. When Emi loses it, she is certain that she has lost her friend, too, but she soon discovers that her memories will always remain in her heart. Yoshiko Uchida's The Bracelet is a poignant story sensitively told and illustrated. Although Ms. Uchida died last year, she left a rich legacy of stories about her life and her heritage. 1993, Philomel, Ages 7 to 11, $15.95 and $5.95. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 0-399-22503-X
ISBN: 0-698-11390-X

The Bracelet
Yoshiko Uchida
Illustrated by Joanna Yardley
   The late Yoshiko Uchida wrote this story based on her experience in an internment camp during World War II. Heroine Emi wipes away her tears, but can't "wipe away the sadness inside" as she looks at her room-empty "like a gift box with no gift inside." So begins this image-laden story of a young Japanese American girl whose Anglo friend gives her a heart bracelet as a remembrance of their friendship. When Emi reaches the filthy horse stall that's to be her home, she notices the loss of the bracelet. Temporarily, everything crumbles inside her but then she realizes that friends and precious things left behind are "things we carry in our hearts and take with us no matter where we are sent." New York Times Best Illustrated Book. 1993, Philomel, Ages 6 to 11, $15.95 and $5.95. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-399-22503-X
ISBN: 0-698-11390-X

The Butterfly
Patricia Pollacco
   Once again, readers are introduced to members of Patricia Polacco's extended family. The setting is France during the Nazi occupation of WWII. Her great aunt Marcel Solliliage and her daughter Monique became a part of the French Resistance. They risked their lives to hide Jews in an effort to help them escape the fate the so many suffered. The story is filled with tension, symbolism and the brutality of the occupation, and the mistreatment of the Jews is not whitewashed. Young Monique grew up fast when she learned that her mother was sheltering a Jewish family and she resolved to keep the secret. Unfortunately, she and the daughter of the family were seen by a neighbor and they had to flee. Only the daughter survived as the Author's Note reveals. While a picture book, this story is for older readers-it requires an understanding or a bit more of an explanation of WWII and the persecution of the Jews. 2000, Philomel, Ages 8 and up, $16.99. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-399-23170-6

The Butterfly
Patricia Polacco
   Drawing from the experience of family members, Polacco takes us back to a Nazi-occupied French village during World War II. What young Monique first thinks is a ghost in her room turns out to be a young Jewish girl, Severine, being hidden with her parents in Monique's basement. The girls steal moments of pleasure together. But fear of discovery forces the family to move on. The butterfly becomes a symbol of freedom. Polacco's lengthy but very readable text brings alive the joy of the girls' time together and the terror of discovery by the Nazis. The village and some of its occupants are introduced in the several pages before the text begins, so that we already feel the anxiety produced by the Nazis as well as the humanity of Monique's mother. Character is created in the sequence of portraits as events evoke emotions of horror, sorrow, friendly pleasures and familial security. The scenes are detailed where important, but otherwise exploit the potentials of color to help tell the story most effectively. A note from the author fills in the historical background. 2000, Philomel Books/Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers, Ages 6 to 10, $16.99. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
ISBN: 0-399-23170-6

A Cache of Jewels
Ruth Heller
   Bold, bright illustrations and playful rhymes introduce the particulars and peculiarities of the parts of speech in 10 inch-square books easy to hold up in front of a group as you sensitize youngsters to what makes good English. Ms Heller's similar Many Luscious Lollipops, Kites Sail High, and Merry-Go-Round target adjectives, verbs, and nouns, respectively. 1987, Grosset, Ages 3 to 10, $17.95 $7.95, and $5.95. Reviewer: Beverly Kobrin
ISBN: 0-448-19211-X
ISBN: 0-448-40451-6
ISBN: 0-698-11354-3

A Cache of Jewels and Other Collective Nouns
Ruth Heller
   One of four books in the "World of Language" series, Heller informs and entertains as she teaches kids about the various parts of speech. This entry is about collective nouns-those words that represent groups of things. The illustrations are pure delight as readers meet a pride of lions, an army of ants, a bevy of beauties and plenty more. It's a great ways to help allay fears and to remove potential boredom from a grammar lesson. A good choice for any library and home too. 1998 (orig. 1990), PaperStar/Putnam, Ages 6 and up, $6.99 and $10.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-698-11354-3
ISBN: 0-448-19211-X

Cendrillon
Robert D. San Souci
Illustrations by Brian Pinkney
   This Cinderella tale is told by the godmother, a Caribbean washerwoman, who loves a lonely little drudge and helps her prepare for a magical night at a rich man's party. Author Robert D. San Souci and artist Brian Pinkney, creators of the critically acclaimed Sukey and the Mermaid, team up again to bring young readers a well-researched Creole folktale with arresting scratchboard illustrations. 1998, Simon and Schuster, Ages 5 to 9, $16.00. Reviewer: Mary Quattlebaum
ISBN: 0-689-80668-X

Children of the Dust Bowl: The True Story of the School at Weedpatch Camp
Jerry Stanley
   This book tells the stories of children of Oklahoma families who migrated to California in the 1930's and 40's. It begins with poignant, vivid and unforgettable descriptions of the hopelessness of their lives before, during, and after their arrival. One person writes of running out of food en route to California. The kids waited for the adults to share the coffee and then took up spoons to eat the coffee grounds. Beaten down by starvation, disease and widespread prejudice, the children turn despair around by building their own school. Ownership and pride give them hope. In the words of one student, "This is what we are now, but it's not what we're going to be." And for most of them, this prophecy proved true. Photo and journalistic documentation combine with a powerful writing style to make this an inspiring, 78-page nonfiction read aloud. 1992, Crown, Ages 5 and up, $15.00 and $15.99. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-517-58781-5
ISBN: 0-517-58782-3

Crazy Horse's Vision
Joseph Bruchac
Illustrations by S.D. Nelson
   Crazy Horse's journey from boyhood to manhood is retold in this informative and satisfying tale. Named Curly at birth because of his hair, he exhibits athleticism, curiosity and strength early on, qualities that mark him as a natural leader. After violence erupts between the white army and his people, he breaks with his tribe's customs and independently seeks a vision to guide them in their struggle. This vision, of a rider sacrificing himself, helps to mature him and is later translated as a portent of his future greatness. It also results in the change of his name to Crazy Horse. This book is effective in vividly and beautifully communicating information about the Lakotan culture. The imagery and poetic language convey the concerns of a people who relied on and respected nature. Additionally, the illustrations arrest the eye. The use of bold geometric shapes and bright colors, combined with traditional Lakotan artistic elements, add to our overall appreciation of this Native American group. 2000, Lee & Low Books, Ages 7 to 12, $16.95. Reviewer: Michele Coulombe
ISBN: 1-8800-0094-6

Crazy Horse's Vision
Joseph Bruchac
Illustrations by S. D. Nelson
   Bruchac tells a sympathetic story about one of the better known Native American chiefs, Crazy Horse. During his early years he was known as Curly and even at a young age was recognized as a leader. After the murder of Chief Conquering Bear, Curly, in anger and frustration, went on a vision quest. While he eventually did have a vision, he was not allowed to reveal it until many years later, since he had not been properly prepared or guided by his elders before setting out on his quest. Curly's vision profoundly changed his life. He kept nothing for himself and devoted his life to the defense of his people against the encroachment of the settlers. In the end, as the author's note explains, Crazy Horse was stabbed at a supposed peace conference. The illustrations are unusual and draw upon Native American traditions. The colors have significance, as do the designs. Crazy Horse is shown in blue to depict his connection with the spirit world and the designs of lightening bolts and hail represent the powers of nature that gave him strength. The endpapers do look like the ledger books of the Plains Indians. Nelson recently illustrated another Native American story, Gift Horse (2000, Abrams) which has a similar look. 2000, Lee and Low, Ages 6 to 9, $16.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 1-880000-94-6

Destination Deep Sea
Jonathan Grupper
   Starting near the surface of the ocean, Grupper invites armchair explorers to don a facemask and flippers and to venture into the waters of a coral reef. Stunning photographs reveal the color and variety of life that inhabit the shallow waters. Moving from these warm waters to temperate ones, explorers don scuba gear to swim with the dolphins. They can watch a sea otter dining on sea urchins and marvel at the beauty of sea stars, sharks and the most unusual mola mola. To go deeper, one needs a submersible - at 100 feet, the ocean becomes dark; at 1,000 feet, you may see some amazing creatures, many of whom are equipped with their own lighting system. For a look at even greater depths, an ROV (remotely operated vehicle) is required. At 6,000 feet, there is a whole different world with life forms that were unknown until a few years ago. The world's oceans are largely unexplored and are truly the last frontier. An excellent closing note about the importance of understanding the ocean and what current and future studies may reveal accompanies this description of a beautiful and fascinating journey. 2000, National Geographic, Ages 8 and up, $16.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-7922-7693-0

Dia's Story Cloth: The Hmong People's Journey of Freedom
Dia Cha
Stitched by Chue and Nhia Thao Cha
   A story cloth is a way that the Hmong chronicle their journey through the past and the present. Dia's Story Cloth is a work of art that is also a history lesson. No patterns are used, no measurements are made. The needlework is done by eye, and comes out perfectly every time. The cloth shown in detail in this book is the one sent to Dia by her aunt and uncle who made it. It details their story, their search for freedom. This is a unique book that will inspire discussion and appreciation for the artwork and the sacrifices the Hmong have had to make for freedom. 1996, Lee & Low, Ages 8 and up, $15.95 and $6.95. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 1-880000-34-2
ISBN: 1-880000-63-6

Dia's Story Cloth: The Hmong People's Journey of Freedom
Dia Cha
Stitched by Chue and Nhia Tha Cha
   Accompanied by a beautiful story cloth stitched by her aunt and uncle, Dia Cha has written a short history of the Hmong people. It begins in China and continues with emigration into Burma, Thailand, and Laos. Dia tells of the peaceful life of her people until war broke out in Laos in the 1960's. She goes on to tell of her family's escape to the United States and of their adjustment to life in this country. The story cloth is intricately stitched and brightly colored, showing the dress, labors, and struggles of the Hmong people. Joyce Herold, curator at the Denver Museum of Natural History, ends the book with her own description of the Hmong, and provides photos of Hmong embroidery. 1998 (orig. 1996), Lee & Low, Ages 8 to 12, $15.95 and $6.95. Reviewer: Dia L. Michels
ISBN: 1-880000-34-2
ISBN: 1-880000-63-6

Domitila: A Cinderella Tale from the Mexican Tradition
Adapted by Jewell Reinhart Coburn
Illustrations by Connie McLennan
   Set in the Mexican state of Hidalgo, in the 1800s, this beautifully written and illustrated picture book presents a Mexican version of the traditional Cinderella tale, featuring an admirable heroine who exudes strength, wisdom and resourcefulness even more than physical beauty. Following her mother's precept to "Do every task with care, and always add a generous dash of love." Domitila manages to win the heart of a proud young politician's son, who, refreshingly, must journey to transform himself into a more caring person, before he can find Domitila and live happily ever after. Colorful, realistic oil paintings enhance this appealing book, which also incorporates bilingual Mexican proverbs around the borders, and includes the recipe for the Nopales that first attracted Timoteo to Domitila. A glossary and source note are also included. The longer than average length of the story would make this book more suitable for an older audience than the usual picture book group. 2000, Shen's Books, Ages 6 and up, $16.95. Reviewer: Gisela Jernigan
ISBN: 1-885008-13-9

Earth Always Endures
Neil Philip
Photographs by Edward S. Curtis
   A fantastic book containing photographs and poems of the Native American culture. The poems are really songs and prayers rooted in a strong heritage honoring the earth. Equally important are the photographs capturing the visual pieces of this heritage, from the Flathead mother to the Piegan Riders. This book focuses on the many different Native American tribes, providing a rich sense of the various diversities among them. This is a great learning tool for Native American culture, poetry in general, and for understanding the wonders of the land. 1996, Viking, Ages 7 and up, $19.99. Reviewer: Sheree Van Vreede
ISBN: 0-670-86873-6

The Eleventh Hour, a Curious Mystery
Graeme Base
   Little and big sleuths alike will delight in this ingenious clue-filled creation from the author of "Animalia." When Horace turns eleven years old, he gives himself a grand party. But there is mischief afoot, and it is up to the reader to discover the perpetrator. Through a series of clues cleverly buried in the plot as well as in the book's sumptuously lively illustrations, we are led Columbo-style down the road to discovery. But it's not an easy journey, and that's what makes it fun. If all else fails, the author has graciously offered his extensive explanation of each clue at the back of the book, not to mention a glimpse into how his mind works-which is in itself a fascinating voyage. Consider this aerobics for the brain. It's a good workout! 1997, Puffin, $Ages 6 and up, 6.99. Reviewer: Marilyn Bagel
ISBN: 0-14-056160-9

The Eleventh Hour: A Curious Mystery
Graeme Base
   The same creative, expressive talent who created The Sign of the Seahorse: A Tale of Greed and High Adventure in Two Acts has created this mystery of words and images. Which of the eleven invited guests stole the food for the birthday party for Horace, the eleven-year-old birthday elephant? Eric the zebra? Max the Bengal tiger? Kilroy the mouse? Hidden with elaborately detailed illustrations are clues, some so encrypted as to be nearly impossible to unravel. Oh-so witty text, done in rhyme, is even more delightful when read aloud. "The cakes had turned to scattered crumbs, / no cream was to be seen, / And nothing now remained where once the Chocolate Mousse had been./ The Centrepiece had toppled, / not a strawberry was left. / 'But who', they cried, 'could possibly have managed such a theft?'" Fortunately for this reader, the answer-and even more important, a guide to the clues-is revealed in a special section at the back of the book! 1993, Harry N. Abrams, Ages 8 and up, $18.95 and $11.95. Reviewer: Barbara B. Disckind
ISBN: 0-8109-0851-4
ISBN: 0-8109-3265-2

The Faithful Friend
Robert D. San Souci
Illustrated by Brian Pinkney
   This magical tale from the island of Martinique tells of two devoted friends, Clement and Hippolyte, who "were so close that the happiness of one was the happiness of both." Cursed by a quimboiseur (a wizard) and pursued by zombies, each friend offers to lay down his life for the other and thereby returns the curse to its wicked source. Pinkney's graceful scratchboard illustrations of bright island scenes full of banana trees and hibiscus blossoms contrast with moody night scenes when the beautiful zombies scheme. 1995, Simon & Schuster, Ages 5 to 10, $16.00. Reviewer: Victoria Crenson
ISBN: 0-02-786131-7

Fly High! The Story of Bessie Coleman
Louise Borden and Mary Kay Kroeger
Illustrated by Teresa Flavin
   Coleman's story should be an inspiration particularly to girls and African-Americans, for she overcame the prejudice against her on both counts to become a licensed stunt pilot in the 1920s. Her life, from picking cotton in rural Texas through her work in Chicago, her trip to France to learn to fly, and her performances in the air are all detailed in simply told chapters. Flavin's full page colored drawings are replete with the details of Coleman's life, helping to personalized this biographical sketch. The problems of her being black are illustrated subtly in scenes showing her carrying a sack on one side of the street while on the other side a pair of white women stroll by; or in the segregated barbershop and newspaper office. The later scenes of flying triumph clearly show her elation in having achieved her dream against all odds. An author's note adds information to this useful piece of history. 2001, Margaret K. McElderry Books/Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing, Ages 8 to 12, $16.00. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
ISBN: 0-689-82457-2

Freedom School, Yes!
Amy Littlesugar
Illustrated by Floyd Cooper
   Jolie has misgivings when her Mama agrees to board the new Freedom School teacher, Annie, in their Mississippi home in 1964. Her fears become a reality when a brick is thrown through their front window and later, when their church is burned. The people maintain their courage and not only rebuild the church but also construct a school. In the meantime, the nineteen-year-old white teacher from the north has been holding classes outdoors and telling her students about famous African-Americans. When Jolie needs to muster up courage, she is able to do so armed with the knowledge that Annie has disseminated. Cooper has masterfully created wonderful facial expressions for the characters of the story. An historic moment is eloquently captured here, in both text and illustration. Together, they convey the anxieties, anguish and determination of those who participated in the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. The author's note states that this story is a composite based on the experiences of several Freedom School teachers. 2001, Philomel, Ages 7 to 10, $16.99. Reviewer: Sharon Salluzzo
ISBN: 0-399-23006-8

Freedom Summer
Deborah Wiles
Illustrated by Jerome Lagarrigue
   Two boys, one black and one white, are friends, but they live in a place and time when the races don't mix. Then they learn that the laws have changed and all that was denied-swimming in the town pool, entering the grocery store from the front door, and sitting together at a movie can happen. When the two dash off to the pool they learn that some would rather deny access to all than have the races mix. The pain and injustice of segregation are palpable in both the text and pictures, but the book ends on a more optimistic note with the boys, arms linked, walking in through the front door of the store. While the story was effective, it seemed inconsistent. At the beginning of the book the age of the boys seems younger than the succeeding activities and events would suggest. Their ability to go off to swimming unsupervised and the fact that John Henry's brother was part of the crew at the finale seemed to be a bit of a stretch. 2001, Atheneum, Ages 4 to 8, $16.00. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-689-83016-5

The Frog Prince Continued
Jon Scieszka
Illustrated by Lane Smith
   Scieszka and his comic cohort, Smith, ignited a resurgence of retellings and brought new vision to fairy tales with The Frog Prince Continued. Scieszka gravitated to fairy tales because it's the genre that kids are in charge of-where they can take control and be in on the joke. Below Scieszka's patina of humor and playfulness, there is a respect for kids that shapes his work. His books may appeal to adults, but they are created for, motivated by, and support the vision of kids. 1991, Viking, $14.95 and $4.99. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-670-83421-1
ISBN: 0-14-054285-X
ISBN: 0-14-055522-6

The Frog Prince, Continued
Jon Scieszka
Illustrations by Steve Johnson
   This hilarious book does not recount the famous tale of the frog prince, but instead tells the story of life "happily ever after." In their new life together, the prince retains many of his nasty frog habits (hopping on furniture and flicking his tongue at passing flies) and the princess nags the prince's every action. Tired of his miserable life, the prince heads out to the deep woods to find a witch who will change him back into an ordinary frog. Along his journey, he encounters the zany antics of different fairy tale witches, and as a result, learns the true meaning of love and happiness. When he returns to his wife, the prince gives her a great big kiss that turns them both into frogs. Now that's a "hoppy" ending! 1991, Viking, Ages 5 and up, $14.95 and $4.99. Reviewer: Debra Briatico
ISBN: 0-670-83421-1
ISBN: 0-14-054634-0

The Gargoyle on the Roof
Jack Prelutsky
Pictures by Peter Sís
   Scary poems and terrifying pictures combine to make another winner of a book, but steer clear of this one if your youngster has an apprehensive streak-or, at least, read it only under a bright sunshiny light! "Beneath a bridge, a greedy troll/ Perennially waits," could jinx bridges forever for the faint-hearted. And "My sister is a werewolf,/ It's disquieting and strange how I wish she were a vampire/ Like her loving family" is certainly a horrendous (delicious?) choice to contemplate. "Gorgeous" pictures of gargoyles make this a colorful choice for the courageous. 1999, Greenwillow, Ages 5 to 10, $16.00. Reviewer: Judy Chernak
ISBN: 0-688-09643-3

The Girl Who Spun Gold
Virginia Hamilton
Illustrated by Leo and Diane Dillon
   Hamilton spins an interesting variation on the Rumplestiltskin story. Set in Africa, Quashiba becomes the wife of a king (Big King) when her mother promises that her daughter can spin golden thread from ordinary cotton. Big King marries Quashiba and gives her everything she desires for a year, but then locks her up and demands that she produce gold. Lit'mahn enters and offers his help, but there is a catch, Quashiba must guess his full name within three nights or he will make her tiny and whisk her away with him. The tale follows its traditional form with Quashiba discovering Lit'mahn's true name. In a nice twist she also punishes Big King for his greed, but eventually forgives him. The Dillons have produced a book that truly gleams with gold and other rich colors. The exotic setting is a visual feast, and the colloquial retelling using lilting West Indian speech patterns make this book a great read aloud. 2000, Scholastic, Ages 5 and up, $16.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-590-47378-6

Grandfather's Journey
Allen Say
   Many immigrants must experience the same conflicting emotions as Say's grandfather in his Caldecott Award book. Homesick for Japan when in California; yet, longing to return when at home in Japan. It was his grandson, Allen, who made the journey here and now lives in San Francisco. The paintings are haunting evocations of a time past and appear as an intimate part of a family's album. The range of emotions make this book suitable for older children and adults. 1993, Houghton, Ages 8 and up, $16.95. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 0-395-57035-2

Grandfather's Journey
Allen Say
   The cover of this book shines with gold, which is a good representation for the richness within. The author tells how his Japanese grandfather travels to America and falls in love with its diversity. Later, he journeys to America, and, like his grandfather, learns that "the moment I am in one country, I am homesick for the other." There are few words in the book, but it speaks paragraphs about all kinds of longing. 1993, Houghton Mifflin, Ages 5 to 9, $16.95. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-395-57035-2

Grandfather's Journey
Alan Say
   Gorgeous watercolor illustrations of a Japanese immigrant's love for life in both Japan and America and his strong desire to be in both places at once. The text is sparse, but the beautiful illustrations range from those that look like family portraits and photos to Japanese and American cityscapes and landscapes. A Caldecott Medal winner. 1993, Houghton Mifflin,Ages 4 to 8, $16.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-395-57035-2

Harlem
Walter Dean Myers
Paintings by Christopher Myers
   Walter Dean Myers and his son Christopher have created a moving tribute to Harlem. Walter's poem pulsates with the jazzy rhythms and street sounds, the color and the people that make Harlem distinctive. Christopher's collage paintings interpret the text with powerful images of strong men, thoughtful women, and carefree children playing in the street, their playground. The colors are suffused with shadings that create a sense of movement, that startle and yet please. If ever a book was Caldecott calibre, this is it, Harlem. Listen to the words: "They brought a call, a song/ First heard in the villages of/ Ghana/ Mali/ Senegal/ Calls and songs and shouts/ Heavy hearted tambourine rhythms/ Looses in the hard city/ Like a scream torn from the throat of an ancient clarinet..." 1997, Scholastic, Ages 9 and up, $16.95. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 0-590-54340-7

Harlem
Walter Dean Myers
Illustrated by Christopher Myers
   The father and son-Walter Dean Myers and Christopher Myers have outdone themselves in this spectacular book. The Walter Dean has written a lovely poem about the rich history of Harlem, ."..a promise / Of a better life, of a place where a man didn't / Have to know his place / Simply because he was / Black." Not only is the journey of African-Americans to Harlem and their lives described lyrically in words but also it is beautifully illustrated in Christopher Myers' vivid collage art. The pictures tell their own story of the powerful impact Harlem had on the lives of its residents. 1997, Scholastic Press, Ages 10 and up, $16.95. Reviewer: Rebecca Joseph
ISBN: 0-590-54340-7

Hercules
Robert Burleigh
Illustrations by Raul Colon
   A simple but poetic text relates the final and most difficult of the twelve labors of Hercules as he journeys to the Underworld to bring back Cerberus, the three-headed dog that guards Hades. The dramatic illustrations, rendered in watercolor and colored pencil, boldly bring to life the hero and the dark world to which he descends. A brief forward and explanation of characters will give the neophyte a firm grasp of the story. What a wonderful way to introduce these stories to young readers and possibly whet their appetite for more. 1999, Harcourt Brace, Ages 7 to 12, $16.00. Reviewer: Beverley Fahey
ISBN: 0-15-201667-8

Her Stories: African American Folktales, Fairy Tales and True Tales
Virginia Hamilton
Illustrated by Leo and Diane Dillon
   This is a stunning collection made even more spectacular with the poignant illustrations by Leo and Diane Dillon. Hamilton takes children through animal and supernatural tales, biography and legend with a range of telling that is as diverse and powerful as the stories told. 1995, Scholastic, Ages 10 and up, $19.95. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-590-47370-0

Her Stories: African American Folktales, Fairy Tales, and True Tales
Virginia Hamilton
Illustrated by Leo and Diane Dillon
   A compelling account of African American women in twenty stories divided into five sections, many of which come from oral traditions and are quite varied. However, the unifying theme, as the title suggests, is the focus on women. These women are clever, funny, poignant, brave, and full of life. There is something for everyone in this collection. The Dillions' superb acrylic paintings, including numerous full pages, smaller inserts, and a truly beautiful cover, combine to provide a feast for the eyes that reflects a real harmony between author and illustrators. Winner of the Laura Ingalls Wilder Award and a Coretta Scott King Award. 1995, Scholastic, Ages 8 to 12, $19.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-590-47370-0

The Hunter: A Chinese Folktale
Retold by Mary Casanova
Illustrations by Ed Young
   In a time of terrible drought, even a good hunter like Hai Li Bu cannot find enough food. One day he rescues a small snake from a crane. She is the daughter of the Dragon King of the Sea, who wants to reward the hunter. All Hai Li Bu asks for is the ability to understand animals, so he can find food for the village. But he must never reveal his secret or he will be turned to stone. All prosper from his gift. But when he learns from the animals that a terrible flood is coming, the only way he can convince the villagers to listen is to sacrifice himself by revealing his secret. The traditional folktale concludes that now the villagers "listen to every person." Young's compelling double-page images, seemingly brushed black lines on warm, brown-toned paper, retain the energy of their generation. Several zigzag strokes create a distant village; thicker brush stokes stretched across the empty page become the attacking cranes. Emotions roll as we turn the pages to absorb the visual story. Small, red, calligraphy rectangles are added, one per page. A glossary translates them, so we can see that they also tell the story in extremely succinct shorthand. The three narrative modes further enrich the fable. 2000, Atheneum Books for Young Readers, Ages 5 to 8, $16.95. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
ISBN: 0-689-82906-X

The Hunter: A Chinese Folktale
Retold by Mary Casanova
Illustrated by Ed Young
   When you combine a gifted writer with an illustrator of Ed Young's talent, it is no surprise that a special book is the result. The author first heard this folktale related by a Chinese exchange student. It is a story of a young hunter. During a time of scarce game, he meets a magic snake who gives him the gift of communicating with animals in order to become a more effective hunter. After a long period of famine, he succeeds in feeding the people of the village. Ultimately, however, he must decide whether to save his own life or the lives of the villagers. The sketches in shades of gold and black set the mood for this simple and gripping tale. It is an excellent book for group discussion on character, values and altruism. Though it is a folktale set in a different culture, the role model-Hai Li Bu-is universal and powerful in this beautifully told story . It truly is a gift to the very young, as well as the very old. 2000, Atheneum Books for Young Readers, Ages 5 and up, $16.95. Reviewer: Kathleen Orosz
ISBN: 0-689-82906-X

I Have a Dream: An Illustrated Edition
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Paintings by Fifteen Coretta Scott King Award and Honor Book Artists
Foreword by Coretta Scott King
   Dr. King's moving speech is peacefully rendered here by a special group of artists. Each of these artists have previously won the coveted Coretta Scott King Award. This award recognizes the gifts that African American authors and illustrators give via their art. But the illustrations are only half of the story. They are woven, warp and weft, within the fabric of Dr. King's speech from August of 1963. With this book, we can hear the words and see the dream with fresh eyes for this is a beautifully rich volume, from its luxurious end-pages, to its back matter. Each illustration captures the spirit of Dr. King's message. The illustrations and text call for our memories of yesterday, the possibilities for today, and a hope for a not-too-distant tomorrow. The volume ends with a tribute to Dr. King. The end matter includes a photograph of Dr. King, a short biography, and signed descriptions of each artist's work. 1997, Scholastic Press, Ages 11 and up, $16.95. Reviewer: Karen Moroughan
ISBN: 0-590-20516-1

I See the Rhythm
Toyomi Igus
Illustrated by Michele Wood
   Igus begins with early African rhythms and circles back as a singer raps: "Africa's inside me/ taking back her child./ she's giving me my pride/ and setting me free." The reader is led through a history of African-American music. Each luscious page is a collage of poetry, history and visual images which form a tribute to the ingenuity and spirit of a people captured in their music. In "Origins," Igus' poetry describes the griots' stories as "the rhythm of our beginnings...the pulse of a people and a land in harmony." Woods accompanies with collages of masks and patters that praise a past and bear witness to the sorrow of the coming of slave traders. The artists' duet leads readers through fourteen different periods of musical evolution. 1998, Children's Book Press, Ages 6 and up, $15.95. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-89239-151-0

I See the Rhythm
Toyomi Igus
Illustrated by Michele Wood
   From the slave songs to the blues, to ragtime, jazz beginnings, be-bop, gospel, rhythm and blues, rock 'n roll, funk and hip hop, each form is presented in exciting paintings with poetic text. "I see the rhythm of big band jazz...The finger poppin' jazz of Fletcher Henderson, the foot-stompin' rhythms of Louis Armstrong, the toe-tappin' genius of Duke Ellington...make us wanna boogie-woogie all night long." Each page is graced with informational bits about each of the musical names and political events of the period. The book must be combined with the music of the era from the songs of slavery, "Let my people go!" to the cool jazz of John Coltrane, Miles Davis and your own favorites. 1998, Children's Book Press, Ages 9 and up, $15.95. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 0-89239-151-0

I See the Rhythm
Toyomi Igus
Paintings by Michele Wood
   This beautifully painted picture book is a quite sophisticated look at African American history and music over the past 500 years. The paintings depict musical scenes from slave times up to present day rap artists. The paintings are captioned with chronological historical events such as the first slave capture in the 1500s, and the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863. The text is a poetic rendering of the musical history of African Americans including slave songs, blues, ragtime, jazz, swing, bebop, gospel, rhythm and blues, soul, rock, funk and rap/hip hop. Historical information about various artists is given along with excerpts from songs. A wonderful resource for the study of the history of African American music. 1998, Children's Book Press, Ages 6 and up, $15.95. Reviewer: Cheryl Peterson
ISBN: 0-892-39151-0

I, Too, Sing America: Three Centuries of African American Poetry
Catherine Clinton
Illustrated by Stephen Alcorn
   When one is given a book-a gift-of poetry, it is sometimes hard to define the characteristics that distinguish it from every other anthology in its category. In the case of this splendid group of poems by African American writers, the special qualities virtually leap off the page and demand to be noticed. Notably, there is the strong visual appeal of the illustrations by Stephen Alcorn. Softly colored but strongly evocative, these pages perfectly complement the poems they describe with impressionistic images. Then there are the brief biographies of each of the twenty-five poets. Clinton has added these intriguing sketches to place the poet in historical context, but also to establish a timeline, a progression, of the African American presence in America. The biographies include enticing tidbits of Black history and lore, such as the fact that poet James Weldon Johnson served as consul to Venezuela in 1906. Readers will also note the high level of education and achievement among these men and women of letters, many of whom were able to attend college when higher education was the exception, not the rule, for all Americans. Overwhelmingly, the greatest achievement of this collection is the poetry itself, an incredible mix of styles, sophistication and lyricism which will captivate the reader. Names like Langston Hughes, W.E.B. DuBois, Maya Angelou, and Alice Walker are prominent in the collection. Yet, lesser-known writers like slave poets Phillis Wheatley and Moses Horton and the numerous voices that sing out from the Harlem Renaissance movement make no less of an impact. Readers may be horrified by Lucy Terry's epic observation of an Indian massacre as seen through a slave's eyes. They may be torn by the numerous, gut-wrenching testimonies to the pain of racism in America. Children of all races will identify with contemporary poet Rita Dove's sassy statement of personal worth in the face of schoolyard teasing. Every reader should find some universal emotion, some encompassing yearning, with which to identify in this volume that runs the gamut of the African American experience. If you are a librarian or a teacher, do not consign this book to a Black history collection or a children's poetry shelf. Its appeal is all-inclusive. 1998, Houghton Mifflin Company, Ages 10 and up, $20.00. Reviewer: Lois Rubin Gross
ISBN: 0-395-89599-5

When Jessie Came Across the Sea
Amy Hest
Illustrated by P. J. Lynch
   Jessie has been chosen to leave her poor village and resettle in America. There she will have a chance to build a new life, but it is a bittersweet opportunity for Jessie who loves her hometown and her grandmother. Bravely she sets out and is aided in the arduous journey by a boy named Lou. Once in New York City, Jessie begins earning a living making lace, a skill learned from her beloved grandmother. It is an immigrant story that ends happily, reuniting Jessie with her grandmother and with Jessie meeting up again with Lou. The artwork makes this poignant story truly outstanding. Lynch's use of light in the scenes and faces of his characters captures the moods-from the difficult Atlantic crossing, to endless hours of sewing, the bustling city streets, and the final happy moments. A truly wonderful book that would be an excellent choice for older, reluctant readers. 1997, Candlewick, Ages 7 and up, $16.99. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-7636-0094-6

John Henry
Retold by Julius Lester
Illustrated by Jerry Pinkney
   Many versions of the legend of John Henry exist, but the most exciting version to date is Julius Lester's. The combination of dynamic tall tale language and powerful paintings set this picture book apart from all the others. "John Henry sang and he hammered and the air danced and the rainbow shimmered and the earth shook and rolled from the blows of the hammer." A read-aloud gem. 1994, Dial, Ages 7 to 11, $16.99 and $16.89. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 0-8037-1606-0
ISBN: 0-8037-1607-9

John Henry
Julius Lester
Illustrated by Jerry Pinkney
   "This tale attempts to be faithful to the indomitable human spirit John Henry embodies" is the opening line on a soft yellow page that introduces this African-American folk hero. John Henry challenges a steam drill in a tunnel-digging contest. He wins, but the exertion proves to be his undoing. Award winning artist Jerry Pinkney's absolutely beautiful watercolors reflect the strength, emotions and awe of John Henry and his exploits. A book for reading aloud and to be treasured for a lifetime. 1994, Dial, Ages 4 to 8, $16.99 and $16.89. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-8037-1606-0
ISBN: 0-8037-1607-9

Kites Sail High
Ruth Heller
   Bold, bright illustrations and playful rhymes introduce the particulars and peculiarities of the parts of speech in 10 inch-square books easy to hold up in front of a group as you sensitize youngsters to what makes good English. Ms Heller's similar Many Luscious Lollipops, Merry-Go-Round, and A Cache of Jewels target adjectives, nouns, and collective nouns, respectively. 1988, Grosset, Ages 3 to 10, $17.95 and $7.95. Reviewer: Beverly Kobrin
ISBN: 0-448-10480-6
ISBN: 0-448-40452-4

Kites Sail High: A Book about Verbs
Ruth Heller
   One of four books in the "World of Language" series, Heller informs and entertains as she teaches kids about the various parts of speech. This entry is about verbs-those words that tell you something is being done. The illustrations are pure delight as readers meet vigorous verbs, linking verbs, helping verbs, and learn about active and passive voice and those nasty irregular verbs. It's a great ways to help allay fears and to remove potential boredom from a grammar lesson. A good choice for any library and home too. 1998 (orig. 1990), PaperStar/Putnam, Ages 6 and up, $6.99 and $10.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-698-11389-6
ISBN: 0-448-10480-6

Lord of the Cranes
Kerstin Chen
Illustrations by Jian Jiang Chen
   Tian, the wise old Lord of the Cranes, comes down from his mountain to see whether people are remembering to be kind and generous. Dressed as a beggar, he is rebuffed by many, but treated kindly by Wang the innkeeper. To thank him, Tian paints three beautiful, magical cranes on his wall. When they hear singing and clapping, the birds come off the wall and dance. They bring prosperity to Wang, but he remains kind and generous. When he wishes to repay the Lord, Tian asks Wang only to carry to all the message of sharing with the less fortunate. This mystical folktale is visualized in blurry, full-page and double-page paintings as if seen through the screen of time. There are hints of Chinese architecture and suggestions of the individual characters along with the elegance of the long-necked cranes. Purple and brown hues with orange highlights help reinforce the spirituality of the story, which the author heard as a child in China. 2000, A Michael Neugebauer Book/North-South Books Inc., Ages 5 to 8, $15.95 and $15.88. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
ISBN: 0-7358-1192-X
ISBN: 0-7358-1193-8

Lord of the Cranes
Retold by Kerstin Chen
Illustrations by Jian Jiang Chen
Translated by J. Alison James
   High in the mountains of China lived an old man named Tian, whose name means "heaven." He lived among the birds known as cranes, and he was devoted to the beautiful creatures. One day, Tian descended into the city because he wanted to see if people were still kind and generous. Disguised as a beggar, he wandered the streets for many cold and hungry days. Finally, a kindly restaurant owner named Wang takes pity on Tian and feeds him, asking nothing in return. Tian rewards Wang with a magical mural of his beloved cranes, which draws people from all around to Wang's restaurant. This Chinese folk tale is lovingly retold here, accompanied by gorgeously vivid watercolors. 2000, North-South Books, Ages 8 to 12, $15.95. Reviewer: Christopher Moning
ISBN: 0-7358-1192-X

Many Luscious Lollipops
Ruth Heller
   Bold, bright illustrations and playful rhymes introduce the particulars and peculiarities of the parts of speech in 10 inch-square books easy to hold up in front of a group as you sensitize youngsters to what makes good English. Ms Heller's similar Up, Up and Away, Kites Sail High, and A Cache of Jewels target adverbs, verbs, and collective nouns, respectively. 1989, Grosset, Ages 3 to 10, $16.95 and $7.95. Reviewer: Beverly Kobrin
ISBN: 0-448-03151-5
ISBN: 0-448-40316-1

Many Luscious Lollipops: A Book about Adjectives
Ruth Heller
   One of four books in the "World of Language" series, Heller informs and entertains as she teaches kids about the various parts of speech. This entry is about adjectives-those words that describe things. The illustrations are pure delight as readers meet specific and non-specific adjectives, predicate adjectives, demonstrative adjectives, possessives, articles and the tricky irregular adjectives. It's a great ways to help allay fears and to remove potential boredom from a grammar lesson. A good choice for any library and home too. 1998 (orig. 1990), PaperStar/Putnam, Ages 6 and up, $6.99 and $6.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-698-11641-0
ISBN: 0-448-40316-1
ISBN: 0-448-03151-5

Marriage of the Rain Goddess: A South African Myth
Margaret Olivia Wolfson
Illustrations by Clifford Alexander Parms
   The lonely rain goddess Mbaba Mwana Waresa, unable to find a god to "stir love in her heart," seeks a husband among humans. When she finds Thandiwe, a young cattle-herder, he seems ideal, but must be put to the test. In a dream he is told to prepare a bridal home and wait for the goddess no matter what. Despite the taunts of villagers and the threat of an approaching storm, he obeys. The goddess has meanwhile selected and elaborately bedecked a lovely young woman, while dressing herself in rags and smearing herself with ashes. But Thandiwe sees the truth in the goddess's eyes. After their wedding celebration they journey to the African heavens where they "will always live." The story is simply told, but the descriptive language is rich with magic. The scenes which nearly fill the double-page spreads also focus on the romantic-exotic mixtures of some diverse African cultures, suggestions of landscapes, believable characters somewhat broadly rendered in mixed media. These are primarily atmospheric settings that serve to stimulate emotions, to evoke some of the mystery that undergirds such mythic tales. An Afterword clarifies the sources of both story and art. 2000 (orig.1996), Barefoot Books, Ages 7 to 10, $15.95 and $6.99. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
ISBN: 1-84148-100-9
ISBN: 1-84148-233-1

Merry-Go-Round: A Book about Nouns
Ruth Heller
   One of four books in the "World of Language" series, Heller informs and entertains as she teaches kids about the various parts of speech. This entry is about nouns-those words that name a person, place or thing. The illustrations are pure delight as readers meet abstract nouns, concrete nouns, compound nouns, and learn about plurals including those tricky words that end in "fe" and nouns that remain the same or become entirely new words. It's a great ways to help allay fears and to remove potential boredom from a grammar lesson. A good choice for any library and home too. 1998 (orig. 1990), PaperStar/Putnam, Ages 6 and up, $6.99 and $6.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-698-11642-9
ISBN: 0-448-40315-3
ISBN: 0-448-40085-5

Merry-Go-Round: A Book About Nouns
Ruth Heller
   Bold, bright illustrations and playful rhymes introduce the particulars and peculiarities of the parts of speech in 10 inch-square books easy to hold up in front of a group as you sensitize youngsters to what makes good English. Ms Heller's similar Many Luscious Lollipops, Kites Sail High, and A Cache of Jewels target adjectives, verbs, and collective nouns, respectively. 1990, Grosset, Ages 3 to 10, $17.95, $7.95. Reviewer: Beverly Kobrin
ISBN: 0-448-40085-5
ISBN: 0-448-40315-3

Middle Passage: White Ships, Black Cargo
Tom Feelings
   This beautiful wordless book captures the silent scream of Africans on their way to the institution of slavery. Using pen and ink and tempera on rice paper, Tom Feelings hauntingly captures the pain of enslaved Africans as they journeyed through the middle passage from Africa to America. He tells the story in black and gray on white. These muted colors express the story of the Africans loss of freedom. The wordless plot includes the attack, capture, forced march, branding, life in the ship's hold, death at sea and auction on land. The power of the book lies in its silence. It speaks for a people who were not permitted to speak for themselves. 1995, Dial, Ages 16 and up, $45.00. Reviewer: Karen Moroughan
ISBN: 0-8037-1804-7

The Middle Passage: White Ships/ Black Cargo
Tom Feelings
Illustrated by Tom Feelings
   The book begins with a long introduction by the author as he tells the story behind the story. It began when he fled the sadness of 1960's Civil Rights America to find the joys of Africa. "As a black American I knew where the sorrow and pain came from, and it was beginning to overwhelm me personally. I wanted to know where the joy I felt, down deep came from...So in 1964 I moved to West Africa. Africa. The original home of all black people." Working in Ghana, he saw joy, and Africa heightened his feelings of identity, and "reaffirmed much that was positive that I had deep inside me about black people." One day, he was asked, "What happened to all of you when you were taken away from here?" Questions and answer came to him in bits and pieces over the next thirty years; personal, spiritual, historical and intra personal insights merging into an oversized, wordless, emotion-packed volume of journey. For as Feelings captures the horrific passage of African slaves en route to slavery in his sixty-four narrative paintings, he also speaks of his own journeys, the journeys of those he knows, has known and never knew. The layouts are different, each speaking of pain, sorrow, and survival in a language universal to all men. There is in these black-and-white figures a uniting of intention and intuition that creates a driving power. The white figures are very white, ghost-like, soulless. Your focus continually returns to the black figures until the nuances of motion and emotion are almost too much to bear. There is variety in perspective. Many of the paintings are long, but not high, giving the feeling of the cramped under deck conditions the slaves faced. Often Feelings makes the pictures fuzzy, urging viewers to look more closely to find focus. Feelings moves fluidly back and forth from specific to universal. On one page spread you see a multitude of black bodies. The ones in the foreground are chained and curled tightly, protecting themselves from the white figures who lash whips above them. There are rows and rows of these bodies behind them, each posturing in a similar way. The page turns and you view a white ship sailing on the backs of two black men whose faces are contorted in a mixture of rage and horror. 1995, Dial, Ages 9 and up, $45.00. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-8037-1804-7

Mine, All Mine (A Book About Pronouns)
Ruth Heller
   Who would have thought a grammar lesson could be so much fun? Taught with singsong language, but careful not to sugarcoat or downplay the message on pronouns. The book does tackle some tough, probably unfamiliar terms. "Demonstrative pronouns make it clear. Those are far. These are near." Readers of any age can benefit, perhaps even solve some plaguing questions, like just what is the proper use of the relative pronouns who and whom? 1997, Putnam Pub Group, Ages 7 to 10, $17.95. Reviewer: Sheree van Vreede
ISBN: 0-448-41606-9
ISBN: 0-614-29227-1

My Mama had a Dancing Heart
Libba Moore Gray
Illustrated by Raul Colon
   "My Mama had a dancing heart and she shared that heart with me" heralds this book's first page. At the story's conclusion, a young ballerina dances to rhythms she's learned from her treasured growing up years, repeating the same lyrical line as if its guided her to her present passion. The entire book is a circle of celebration; of season, of the love that builds between an exuberant mother and her responsive daughter; and of the how that love nurtures self. Together, mother and daughter glorify the turning of time with dances; from their "frog-hopping, leaf-growing, flower-opening hello spring ballet" to their "body-flat arms-moving-up-and-down snow-angel hello winter ballet". In between waltz wonderful experiences of senses as they read poems read aloud while drinking sassafras tea with lemon curls or cut "paper-white delicate snowflakes" while sipping cocoa. Illustrations by Raul Colon extol the whirl of dance and the tenderness of a secure and playful relationship. 1995, Orchard, Ages 6 to 10, $15.95 and $16.99. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-531-09470-7
ISBN: 0-531-08770-0

My Mama had a Dancing Heart
Libba Moore Gray
Illustrated by Raul Colon
   A ballet dancer remembers her mother who shared her love for dance as they celebrated each season. The language is a joy to chant. "Bless the world it feels like/ a tip-tapping/ song-singing/ finger-snapping kind of day. Let's celebrate!" the rhythms of language translated themselves into the language of dance for the girl. Watercolors in muted greens, purples and gold create the illusion of a rhythmical reverie. 1995, Orchard, Ages 6 to 10, $15.95 and $16.99. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 0-531-09470-7
ISBN: 0-531-08770-0

Navajo: Visions and Voices Across the Mesa
Shonto Begay
   By pairing his striking oil paintings with powerful and graceful poetry, Navajo artist Shonto Begay shares many aspects of his life and culture in a very personal way. As explained in the introduction, the twenty paintings and poems cover a wide range of Navajo life, from memories of his past, to rituals, and his feelings about protecting the earth. This beautiful, large-format picture book should appeal to a wide range of readers. An index of the paintings is included. 1995, Scholastic, Ages 0 and up, $15.95. Reviewer: Gisela Jernigan
ISBN: 0-590-46153-2

N.C. Wyeth's Pilgrims
Robert San Souci
   San Souci created a spirited narrative to accompany the famous murals of N.C. Wyeth. In challenge to the customary view of Pilgrim life, Wyeth chose to portray the peace that the religious wayfarers came to know in the New World. He infused the pictures of their lives with the colors of the land, the sea and the rich, golden harvest. Without the somber gray and brown of classic Pilgrim stories, it is possible for young readers to capture the joy and the love that was surely a part of Pilgrim lives. 1991, Chronicle, Ages 7 and up, $14.95. Reviewer: Deborah Zink Roffino
ISBN: 0-87701-806-5

N.C. Wyeth's Pilgrims
Robert San Souci
   Mr. San Souci's account of the Pilgrims' progress is set against the backdrop of N.C. Wyeth's murals commissioned in the early 1940s by the New York Metropolitan Life Insurance Company. Paintings and words vivify the times that preceded the settlers' first Thanksgiving Day in North America. The artist's romanticized interpretation occasionally belies the author's well-researched narrative, however, and, in an afterword, Mr. San Souci carefully notes which details are misrepresented. He also provides more information about Mr. Wyeth, his murals, and the establishment of Thanksgiving Day, the holiday. A reproduction of the Mayflower passenger list comprises this charming book's endpapers. 1991, Chronicle, Ages 9 and up, $14.95. Reviewer: Beverly Kobrin
ISBN: 0-87701-806-5

Night Golf
William Miller
Illustrated by Cedric Lucas
   As Tiger Woods grows increasingly popular among children, it is easy to assume that golf is a "color-free" sport. However, it has only been within the past 40 years that African Americans were permitted to play in professional golf tournaments. In Night Golf, Miller tells the story of a young boy who overcomes racial barriers so that he can realize his dream of golfing. This involves the rigorous work of caddying and facing with humiliation with dignity. The only way he manages to stick with his dream is to accept the kind guidance of an older caddy who shares the secret of "night golf." By practicing on the course in the darkness of night, James builds the skills and confidence he needs to show the other players his talent. Historical information before and after the story provide the necessary context for readers. 1999, Lee and Low Books, Ages 8 to 11, $15.95. Reviewer: Carol Lynch
ISBN: 1-880000-79-2

Once Upon a Time in Chicago
Jonah Winter
Illustrations by Jeanette Winter
   This is the story of the life of Benny Goodman, a remarkable man on many levels. The author does a wonderful job of telling his life story in a style that will engage a younger age group of readers. Winter has a gift for writing that brings out things in Goodman's life that are lesser known, but no less important. Most people know he was a multitalented jazz musician. But many may not know that he came from a Jewish Russian neighborhood in New York, the son of hard working immigrants. One of twelve children, he grew up to be a successful musician and was the first well-known bandleader to integrate his band. The author teams up with his mother as illustrator, and they make a very effective team. The artwork is colorful, with clean lines and expressive faces that will engage children as young as four. Overall, this is beginning biography that is important for children to hear or read. Modest and loving roots produced a musical gift for the world and an extraordinary role model to children of all ages. 2000, Hyperion Books for Children, Ages 4 to 8, $15.49 and $14.99. Reviewer: Kathleen Orosz
ISBN: 0-7868-2404-2
ISBN: 0-7868-0462-9

Pink and Say
Patricia Polacco
   This is the story of Pink, a young black soldier who rescues Say, a young, wounded white soldier, from the battlefield. Pinkus Aylee hides the young white soldier in the house of his mother Moe Moe Bay, who nurtures the boy with food and conversation and comforts his wartime fears. Moe Moe Bay dies trying to hide the two young boys from marauders. The two are then captured and taken to Andersonville Prison where Pink is hanged hours after arrival. His body is thrown into a lime pit. Pinkus Aylee is a character that will never be forgotten. This book is, in fact, taken from a true story told for generations in Polacco's family. Polacco's great-great- grandfather Say spent his life telling the story because he felt guilty for living when "a more worthy human had died," leaving behind neither birth certificate, death certificate, grave nor family to remember him. The book ends with a plea from the author: "When you read this, before you put this book down, say his name out loud and vow to remember him always." The story itself is remarkable, but so is Polacco's artistry. She reveals emotional bonds through her pictures. Throughout the book there is a visual emphasis on hands. Say, tormented by his own perceived cowardice, finds pride in the fact that he has shaken hands with Mr. Lincoln. Throughout, you see the tender hands of Moe Moe Bay, and the caring hands of Pink. When the boys are ripped apart, their hands stretch towards each other and Pink cries out, "Let me touch the hand that touched Mr. Lincoln, Say, just one last time." Polacco masterfully reveals her characters, portraying real life in the way they expose their vulnerability bit by bit. 1994, Putnam, Ages 9 and up, $15.95. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-399-22671-0

Pink and Say
Patricia Polacco
   Based on a true story, this gripping book describes the remarkable friendship between two Union soldiers during the Civil War. In this tale, Pinkus Aylee (Pink), a young black soldier, finds Sheldon Curtis (Say), a white soldier too injured to walk, and carries him home so his mother can nurse him back to health. After marauders kill Pink's mother, the two boys are captured and sent to Andersonville prison, where Pink is eventually killed. 1994, Philomel Books, Ages 6 to 12, $15.95. Reviewer: Debra Briatico
ISBN: 0-399-22671-0

Pink and Say
Patricia Polacco
   Pinkus Aylee never considered color when he saved the life of Sheldon Russell Curtis, a white soldier, wounded and near death. The boys were fighting for the Union Army in the Civil War. Pinkus, aka Pink, carries Sheldon to his mama's house where she treats his wounds and nurses him back to health. During this time, Sheldon, aka Say, confesses his fears of returning to battle and develops an endearing friendship with his black friends. When marauders kill Pink's mama, Moe Moe Bay, the boys flee. They are caught and taken to Andersonville but only Say survives. He keeps the story alive for his children and grandchildren. Now Patricia Polacco, a fifth generation granddaughter, lovingly illustrates and relates this touching story for us all. 1994, Philomel, $15.95. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 0-399-22671-0

Pink and Say
Patricia Polacco
   Say, a young white Civil War soldier, is rescued from a battlefield by another young soldier, Pink, who's African-American. Pink brings Say to his mother, Moe Moe Bay, who nurtures Say back to emotional and physical health. She later dies trying to hide the boys from marauders. Despite her efforts, the boys are captured and taken to Andersonville Prison where they are separated. Later, Say learns of Pink's death. Powerful themes of injustice, pursuit of freedom, stolen youth, interrupted life, and the cruelty of war and its aftermath thread themselves through this engrossing story. 1994, Philomel, $15.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-399-22671-0

Poetry for Young People: Carl Sandburg
Frances Schoonmaker Bolin, editor
Illustrations by Steven Arcella
   This lovely collection contains more than thirty poems written by Carl Sandburg, one of America's most-beloved poets. Readers can travel around the country with Sandburg, as his poems describe visits to rural back roads and busy cities and meetings with friendly animals and ordinary people. His poems find laughter and meaning in everyday things such as doors, rain, colors, and telephone wire. Readers will treasure this unforgettable reading experience! 1995, Sterling, Ages 9 and up, $14.95. Reviewer: Debra Briatico
ISBN: 0-8069-0818-1

Raisel's Riddle
Erica Silverman
Illustrations by Susan Gaber
   Cinderella meets Rachel the Clever in this non-traditional tale for the Jewish holiday of Purim. The rabbi's princely son discovers ragged Raisel to be his mental match when she poses riddles that challenge even his scholarly mind. The prince's ball is transformed into a Purim party where Raisel dresses as Queen Esther and spouts Talmud learned at her grandfather's knee. The book presupposes a knowledge of Purim customs, but even newcomers will recognize the story strands woven together in a new way. 1999, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Ages 5 to 7, $16.00. Reviewer: Lois Rubin Gross
ISBN: 0-374-36168-1

Raisel's Riddle
Erica Silverman
Pictures by Susan Gaber
   Raisel is the Jewish Cinderella heroine in Erica Silverman's story. She loves learning, riddles, and her grandfather. When he dies, she refuses to be a burden on those who would care for her, and finds work in a rabbi's house. Uniquely set against a Purim backdrop, Raisel is an unusual Cinderella. She is strong and capable, and she wins the love of the rabbi's kind son, not solely with her beauty. Raisel cautions him, "look not at the flask but at what it contains" and the rabbi's son, enchanted with her wit and passion for learning, marries her. The couple "lived and learned happily ever after." 1999, Farrar Straus Giroux, Ages 8 and up, $16.00. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-374-36168-1

Rapunzel
Paul O. Zelinsky
   Zelinsky is both the illustrator and reteller of this fairy tale, which was the recipient of the Caldecott Medal. His Renaissance portrayal of the story glows with a richness of detailing and lighting that show a close study of the old masters. His psychological perspectives are also fascinating. In this version, the witch is a sorceress who creates a tower "narrow on the outside, but on the inside it was large with many elegant rooms," a place to keep Rapunzel safe. But when a prince discovers her, the astonished Rapunzel "felt a happiness she had never known." They hold a marriage ceremony alone in the tower and soon thereafter, Rapunzel is surprised, as her dress grows tight around the waist. The distraught sorceress cries "I thought I had kept you safe, away from the whole world, but you have betrayed me!" She becomes a sympathetic character, transforming the tale into the archetypal struggle of a parent who can no longer prevent a child's unavoidable growing up. This book may wind up on banned book lists. Most of us will allow that there was a marriage of sorts, but I suspect it won't satisfy those of rigid morality. I applaud the selection committee, not only for choosing a book whose art shines in text, illustration, and thoughtfulness, but who considered art before public opinion. 1997, Dutton, Ages 6 and up, $16.99. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-525-45607-4

Re-ZOOM
Istvan Banyai
   Re-ZOOM is this artist's view of a world gone slightly mad, but in a fabulous way. Begin with a primitive cave painting of a hunter. Zoom away, and you see that the figure is on the face of a watch, on a hairy wrist. Zoom again, and the wrist belongs to an archaeologist, making a rubbing of a hippo on what seems to be an Egyptian tomb. Zoom again, four times, each time seeing from farther away, and we're in Paris. Or are we? Suddenly we're on a movie set. Every page of this fantastic book makes the reader look closer and discover more. And all this with no words! 1995, Viking, Ages 0 and up, $13.99. Reviewer: Judy Silverman
ISBN: 0-670-86392-0

Rome Antics
David Macaulay
   As its punny title hints, David Macaulay's Rome Antics is a somewhat witty indulgence best appreciated by his adult fans. The author/artist's varied perspectives of Rome illustrate a spare, thinly-stretched tale of a homing pigeon who, upon reaching the outskirts of Rome, opts for the scenic route through the city to deliver the love note it carries. The bird's erratic path, depicted as a bright red line across black and white drawings in Macaulay's signature style, flows in and around ancient ruins and contemporary, car-filled streets. Before reaching its destination-an artist at work on the last spread of this tale-the pigeon has swooped under the Arch of Constantine, been bumped by a basketball near the church of Santa Maria della Pace, descended through the Pantheon's holey roof, flown in circles simulating scrolls, and been startled by a dust mop thrust through the window of the House of Lorenzo Manilo. Brief descriptions of the sites observed by the avian messenger add substance to this view of a restive roam in Rome. 1997, Houghton, Ages 11 and up, $18.00. Reviewer: Beverly Kobrin
ISBN: 0-395-82279-3

Round Trip
Ann Jonas
   The story is a simple and elegant rendition of an outing to the city and the structure of the book makes it memorable to child and parent. The first section details the trip to the city, with the car passing fields and trains and bridges; at the end, turn the book over and the narrative picks up again-but those pictures have been transformed into pictures of factories and cars and freeways passed on the return trip. 1983, Greenwillow Books, Ages 3 and up, $16.00, $15.93 and $3.95. Reviewer: Mary Quattlebaum
ISBN: 0-688-01772-X
ISBN: 0-688-01781-9
ISBN: 0-688-09986-6

The Samurai's Daughter
Retold by Robert D. San Souci
Illustrated by Stephen Johnson
   In this retelling of a Japanese legend, a noble samurai teaches his daughter, Tokoyo, the same virtues of courage, discipline and endurance that a son would learn. When her father is exiled by his 'insane' ruler, the girl decides to join him in exile. She must hide from bandits, fight off a ghost ship of warriors and battle a huge serpent. The paintings capture the excitement of the girl's adventures and the happy reunion reinforces our belief that women, too, are capable of courageous deeds. 1992, Dial/Puffin, Ages 9 to 11, $15.99 and $5.99. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 0-8037-1135-2
ISBN: 0-14-056284-2

Shortcut
David Macaulay
   Albert and his horse, June, take their melons to market. Patty loses her best friend-her pet pig Pearl. Professor Tweet's hot-air balloon trip goes awry. These seemingly disparate events and others merge together in the final climax. On each reading, more and more clues to the final concatenation surface, many revealed only by studying the delightful, gently humorous illustrations. A great reversal of the usual "what do you think will happen next?" story-this time the reader must remember what happened before to answer "how and why did this happen?" 1995, Houghton Mifflin, Ages 5 to 10, $15.95. Reviewer: Dr. Judy Rowen
ISBN: 0-395-52436-9

The Sign Painter
Allen Say
   Who is the sign painter of the title - the Asiatic boy who requests a job or the man who hires him to help paint a series of twelve large billboards? This is only part of the strange mystery in this tale. The two head out into the desert to paint the boards showing only a woman and a word-Arrowstar. But after the last billboard is destroyed by a windstorm and the pair explores a strange roller coaster structure and buildings, they return to town. The young assistant decides to move on. Readers must make their own story from this, including exactly what the word means. Say's naturalistic full-page paintings emphasize the barren beauty of the Southwestern landscape and the attractive allure of the contrasting structures. There is a nod toward Magritte in the empty-framed billboard and a final night scene recalling Hopper. They add to the support of the boy's ambition to be more than a sign painter. 2000, Houghton Mifflin Company/Walter Lorraine Books, Ages 7 to 10, $17.00. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
ISBN: 0-395-97974-9

From Slave Ship to Freedom Road
Julius Lester
Illustrated by Rod Brown
   "Heroism has many faces," the author writes. Readers are encouraged to imagine the fear, the evil, the shame of slavery, even the confusion of what it meant to be finally free. Written for children of all colors, this memorable combination of unforgettable text and mesmerizing paintings brings slavery out of history and into the heart. 1998, Dial Books, Ages 7 to 12, $17.99. Reviewer: Deborah Zink Roffino
ISBN: 0-8037-1893-4

From Slave Ship to Freedom Road
Julius Lester
Paintings by Rod Brown
   Although packaged like one, this is hardly a picture book for toddlers. Lester has written a series of meditations inspired by Rod Brown's historical painting cycle (a seven-year project.) The pictures are evocative recreations spanning the period from the Middle Passage through Emancipation: black bodies floating in the ocean, waiting for sharks; an angry mammy tending her white charges; images of whipping and lynching. It is strong stuff, and Lester's comments and "imagination exercises" are just as strong. The book can be an excellent learning tool, but needs to be overseen by wise teachers. 1998, Dial, Ages 8 and up, $17.99. Reviewer: Kathleen Karr
ISBN: 0-8037-1893-4

Smoky Night
Eve Bunting
Illustrated by David Diaz
   This book, the Caldecott Award winner for the year's finest illustrations, is a story of tolerance placed in the violent setting of the LA riots. The illustrations are collages that add intrigue and extend the story. Shattered glass surrounds a picture of looting; spilled multi-colored cereal accents items spilled from grocery store thieving; and plastic bags describe the senseless stealing from a dry cleaner. The young hero is confused by the chaos and frightened by fire, smashed glass, and his missing cat. His protective mother calmly explains every part of the night's madness. But it is the boy who is the agent of change when he notices how his cat has made friends with another cat; an enemy cat belonging to the Korean woman who owns the grocery down the street. The Korean woman, who had always seemed different and separate becomes a friend in the shelter during the smoky night. This book would be incredibly helpful for children who have shared the protagonist's experience. It is a meaningful book to help talk about the violence that surrounds today's children. Diaz helps to convey the strong message by placing dramatic insets in his powerful collages. 1994, Harcourt Brace, Ages 6 and up, $15.00. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-15-269954-6

The Snow Wife
Robert D. San Souci
Pictures by Stephen T. Johnson
   Years after making a promise to an enchanted woman who becomes his wife, a woodcutter breaks his word. He then begins a dangerous journey to find the wife that he cherishes. This story is based on an ancient Japanese legend is a page-turner, and the watercolor and pastel paintings are captivating. 1993, Dial Books for Young Readers, Ages 10 to 12, $14.99. Reviewer: Mary Clayton Rowen
ISBN: 0-8037-1409-2

So You Want to Be President
Judith St. George
Illustrated by David Small
   Today's children are future American voters and there is no better time to view government in action than around an election year. Here is a new book that earns my vote of confidence as discussion starters. The presidential office is the best place to start with younger children. It is currently getting the most attention and is most familiar to them. A playful, ebullient explanation of what the office really means is provided. St. George puts the presidency in the context of children, observing, for example, that there are both good and bad things about being President. One of the good things is that the President lives in a big white house called the White House. St. George goes on to share more good news (there is a bowling alley at the White House and you don't have to eat vegetables) and some bad news (you have to be polite and do lots of homework). She describes the office through the personalities and characteristics of past presidents with the kind of trivia children like. She discusses categories like size (and Taft's four man tub), age, personality (Andrew Jackson was a big brawler), siblings, and athletics (John Quincy Adams liked to skinny-dip). Her tone is light and Small's accompanying illustrations are rendered in a political cartoon style, showing presidents of different eras cavorting across the pages together. St. George and Small make history seem fun, the office attractive, and America's presidents human. 2000, Philomel, Ages 4 to 8, $17.99. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-399-23407-1

So You Want to Be President?
Judith St. George
Illustrations by David Small
   What could be better for an election year than a tongue-in-cheek look at our forty-one Presidents? Judith St. George has provided the facts-an amazing assemblage of tidbits, such as the frequency of names (six were called James) and the fact that eight were born in log cabins. The best news for those who have presidential aspirations is that size doesn't matter. Presidents have ranged in height from five feet four inches (James Madison) to six feet four inches (Abraham Lincoln). Looks also have not been a great issue, but truthfully in this reviewer's opinion, television has probably changed that. Each page offers amusing information and it is made even more delightful with David Small's caricatures. His scene of the presidential band accompanied by Martha and George Washington on the dance floor and Abraham Lincoln asking Mary Todd to dance is quite funny. Lincoln, as the text notes, was not much of a dancer, but Washington and Wilson look like they could really cut the rug. The scene of Jesse Jackson and Geraldine Ferraro waiting in the wings is a reminder that neither a person of color nor a woman has yet to become President. Kids and adults will enjoy the fun and come away with plenty of good information and fuel for their own presidential aspirations. 2000, Philomel/Penguin Putnam, Ages 7 and up, $17.99. Reviewer: Charles Wyman
ISBN: 0-399-23407-1

Spring: An Alphabet Acrostic
Steven Schnur
Illustrated by Leslie Evans
   As they did in their prior book Autumn, Schnur and Evans have created a series of acrostic poems that relate to the warm days of spring. The budding plants, croaking frogs, longer days and lots of sunshine awaken our senses to the joys of springtime. From the opening poem-After day of/Pouring/Rain, the last/Ice and snow finally/Leave the earth-which spells out "April," other poems such as "Nest," "Seeds," "Twilight" and the concluding poem "Zenith" will intrigue kids with their haiku-like style and cheerful messages. This collection would be an excellent choice for teachers and homeschoolers to introduce acrostics and to challenge kids to create their own variants. The linoleum cut illustrations with bold images and wonderful colors are equally pleasing. 1999, Clarion, Ages 5 to 10, $15.00. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-395-82269-6

Stormy Night
Michele Lemieux
   In this unusual book of musings, the author gives voice to those nighttime I-can't-fall-asleep thoughts that inundate all of us. With a paucity of words and numerous whimsical drawings, a girl and her dog are depicted in various stages of unrest as the girl's mind buzzes with questions. The questions are philosophical, ranging on topics such as fate, fear, dreams, the meaning of existence, and of course, death. They're the sort of reflections in which readers will derive comfort from simply knowing they are not the only ones who wonder about such things. That in itself makes this thick book a worthwhile bedtime companion. Quirky sketches provide added enjoyment and provoke further ruminations. 1999, Kids Can Press, Ages 8 to 12, $15.95. Reviewer: Christopher Moning
ISBN: 1-55074-692-8

Street Music
Arnold Adoff
Illustrated by Karen Barbour
   "I was born in this city but I still look up at the magic." Such is the pleasure of the poet in buildings, parks, people, and pigeons; and the pain of outstretched homeless hands and neighborhood blocks caught in the crossfire of violence. Each page has the electric pulse of passion-hot and cold, steam and ice. Like tiny light bulbs flashing on and off across the cityscape, each poem tries on a different vantage point, a new apartment window or a shifted time of day, and street music requires that you move fast to keep the beat. This is a vivid marriage of language and art, and a collision of energies reflecting their subjects. 1995, HarperCollins, Ages 5 to 9, $16.00 and $15.89. Reviewer: Jessy Deutsch
ISBN: 0-06-021522-4
ISBN: 0-06-021523-2

Summer, An Alphabet Acrostic
Steven Schnur
Illustrated by Leslie Evans
   Close your eyes and let childhood images of summer flow freely into your mind's eye. This is the effect of this series of acrostics. Each page springs us into the glowing warmth of the season, enticing us outdoors and into New England-like action. Nap under the shade of a striped canopy. Hum with the wind and waves along a sandy beach. Admire the dance of the morning sparkle on the lake from a secluded cabin. Dart from daisy to daisy with the whimsical dragonfly. Twist and entwine yourself up the staircase with red and purple clusters of grapes. Hike amid the tall pines. Doze idly with a Black Lab above the emerald grass in a swinging hammock. Race the wind in an eager sailboat. Celebrate the flash of the fireflies from a porch swing. Notice the chunky trunks beginning to stack under the window, readying for fireside chats and cooler nights. Crisp images embrace us, capturing our memories and inviting us to bask in the glow of summer. Interesting vocabulary and a unique acrostic style make this an excellent model for the creative writing classroom. Joined with Schnur and Evans' Autumn and Spring, the set also makes for an inspiring study of the seasons. 2001, Clarion Books, Ages 3 to 12, $15.00. Reviewer: Leslie Julian
ISBN: 0-618-02372-0

Swamp Angel
Anne Isaacs
Illustrated by Paul O. Zelinsky
   This is a wonderful tall tale about the greatest woods-woman in Tennessee, a heroine named Swamp Angel. Full of wit, exaggeration and whimsy, this handsome book unfolds the story of a huge woman who single-handedly saved settlers from a fearsome bear named Thundering Tarnation. She also used a tornado like a lasso and drank a lake dry. Swamp Angel, so named after she walked out of the mist to save pioneers from sinking further into a swamp, does many good-hearted deeds using her special size and power. It is a terrific meld of an American frontier-life story with American primitive-style illustrations painted in oils on cherry, maple, and birch veneers. 1994, Dutton, Ages 3 to 9, $15.99. Reviewer: Barbara B. Disckind
ISBN: 0-525-45271-0

Swamp Angel
Ann Isaacs
Paul O. Zelinsky
   Ann Isaacs luxuriates in the rhythms, images, and idioms of tall tales as she creates an original character, the Tennessee woodswoman, Swamp Angel, who's "second to none in buckskin bravery." Award-winning illustrator Zelinsky has just as much fun painting primitives on cherry and maple veneers to bring alive the whimsy of the stories and the wild beauty of frontier America. He contributes to the rollicking fun, but does not sacrifice the story to their indulgences. Through a partnership of picture and prose he gives a strong and enduring heroine who's not daunted by the "hoots and taunts" of the coonskin-capped machos or a bear named Tarnation with a pelt "equal to a whole year's hunting." Swamp Angel, which won a Caldecott-honor medal, introduces frontier life with a heroine and humor that is sure to engage children. 1994, Dutton, Ages 5 to 9, $15.99. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-525-45271-0

Swamp Angel
Anne Isaacs
Illustrated by Paul Zelinsky
   Thundering Tarnation, a rampaging bear, has Tennessee terrified until that bigger than life heroine Swamp Angel determines to have that bear's pelt. The two match strength and wits in a 3-day battle. The victorious Angel praises the bear, "Confound it, varmint, if you warn't the most wondrous heap of trouble I ever come to grips with." Tall tale language crackles with originality. The sensational art work is painted on cherry and maple veneers. Each scene ripples with energy and wild and wooly action. An all-American hoe-down worthy of a Caldecott Medal. 1994, Dutton, Ages 6 to 10, $15.99. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 0-525-45271-0

The Tale of the Mandarin Ducks
Katherine Patterson
Illustrations by Leo and Diane Dillon
   In this engaging retelling of a Japanese folktale, a greedy lord covets a mandarin duck for his beautiful plumage, captures him, and cages him in a bamboo cage for all to admire. When the wild creature deteriorates because he misses his mate, the kitchen maid, Yasuko, releases the bird against the lord's command. The lord becomes outraged at this deception and sentences Yasuko and the one-eyed servant Shozo to death. Upon hearing of this tragedy, the grateful mandarin duck and his mate outsmart the evil lord and repay the compassionate couple for their kindness. As a result, the young couple and the pair of mandarin ducks end up living happy lives in the forest. The Dillon's magnificently detailed illustrations add beauty to this mesmerizing tale about the power of kindness and love. 1990, Lodestar Books, Ages 5 to 10, $15.99. Reviewer: Debra Briatico
ISBN: 0-525-67283-4

Talking Walls
Margie Burns Knight
Illustrations by Anne Sibley O'Brien
   Talking Walls expands our consciousness about walls throughout history from the Great Wall of China to the Vietnam Veteran's Memorial. This is a picture book that can be used for all ages. For primary ages it introduces children visually to 14 walls around the world but for older children it introduces them to the cultural and historic significance behind these walls. 1995, Pac Asia Pr., Ages 0 and up, $17.95. Reviewer: Jan Lieberman
ISBN: 1-879600-34-X
ISBN: 0-88448-102-6

Tea With Milk
Allen Say
   If you loved Grandfather's Journey then Tea With Milk will give you another look at the author's family, only this time it is through the eyes of his mother. Masako has never known her parents' homeland. She spent her life growing up in the United States. Just as she is planning to head off to college, the family returns to Japan. How frustrating-she is an outsider who must wear kimonos, sit on the floor, and worst of all, her parents have hired a matchmaker to find her a respectable husband. Masako rebelled at a time when properly raised girls in Japan just didn't leave home, head for the city, and look for a job. May, as she preferred to be called, found work in a department store where she also met her future husband, another foreigner who was raised by an English family. They discovered that they both share a love of tea with milk and sugar along with a desire to create their own home and place in the world. The poignant story is accompanied by Say's glorious paintings that look like photographs from a family album. They beautifully capture the setting and the emotions. 1999, Houghton Mifflin, Ages 5 to 8, $17.00. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-395-90495-1

Time Flies
Eric Rohmann
   A bird enters the museum and flies into the dinosaur display area. It enters the skeleton and travels back in time to see the dinosaurs in their habitat. This wordless book's dramatic oil paintings conveys the message that dinosaurs may be the ancestors of birds. Winner of a Caldecott Honor. 1994, Crown, Ages 4 to 9, $17.00 and $17.99. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-517-59598-2
ISBN: 0-517-59599-0

Tree of Hope
Amy Littlesugar
Illustrations by Floyd Cooper
   Amy Littlesugar pays homage to artistic dreams that refuse to die. Even though it is the Depression and the great Lafayette Theater in Harlem is now dark; Florrie's father yearns to act there once again. Frying doughnuts at the bakery, listening to Mama's practical advice, he urges Florrie to dream, too. When the theater re-opens as part of a Franklin Roosevelt project, Florrie is thrilled when Daddy gets a small part, but is anxious that Mama's worries will keep her from the performance. Amy Littlesugar's writing has the cadence of oral storytelling, as if this family drama had been passed down from parent to child for years. Floyd Cooper's brown-toned oil paintings capture the gritty reality of the 1930s even while his touches-and sometimes whole backdrops-of light create a hopeful mood. 1999, Philomel, Ages 4 to 9, $16.99. Reviewer: Mary Quattlebaum
ISBN: 0-399-23300-8

Tree of Hope
Amy Littlesugar
Illustrations by Floyd Cooper
   Florrie's mother and father named her after the great African-American actress Miss Florence Mills. Her father is also an actor, but the effects of the Depression force him to take a job in a bakery and give up his career on stage. Florrie and her father regularly visit the Tree of Hope outside the Lafayette Theater in Harlem. There they wish for her father to have the opportunity to act again. Finally, that wish comes true as Orson Welles comes to town to direct a play at the Lafayette. However, the play is Macbeth and people in the neighborhood are displeased that it is not about Black folks. In the end, Florrie's father gets his chance to perform in a unique version of the Shakespeare classic. Set in the Depression this touching story, which features rich and elegant illustrations, tells a little known tale of the theatrical renaissance in Harlem. A child's simple faith and the ability of people to accept and adapt a classic work to a changing era will touch readers. This is a book that can find a place in any elementary classroom. 1999, Philomel, Ages 5 to 9, $16.99. Reviewer: Greg M. Romaneck
ISBN: 0-399-23300-8

The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs!
John Scieszka
Illustrations by Lane Smith
   In this humorous story, Alexander T. Wolf tells his own outlandish version of what really happens during his encounter with the three pigs. He claims that he runs out of sugar for a cake that he is making for his grandmother. In an effort to locate sugar for his recipe, he visits the homes of his pig neighbors. At the first two houses, he goes into sneezing fits and ends up blowing the houses down, killing both pigs. Of course he couldn't let those two good meals go to waste, so he eats them up! When he visits the third house, occupied by a grouchy pig, the wolf endures nasty insults, and as a result, tries to knock down the front door. When the police arrive at the scene, they capture an angry sneezing and wheezing wolf. After he ends up in jail, the wolf claims that he is being framed by the media, who are "blowing" the whole story out of proportion. Smith's simplistic and wacky illustrations add to the effectiveness of this fractured fairy tale. 1989, Viking, Ages 5 to 10, $15.99. Reviewer: Debra Briatico
ISBN: 0-670-82759-2

True Story of the Three Little Pigs
Jon Scieszka
Illustrated by Lane Smith
   Scieszka and his comic cohort, Smith, ignited a resurgence of retellings and brought new vision to fairy tales with True Story of the Three Little Pigs. Below Scieszka's patina of humor and playfulness, there is a respect for kids that shapes his work. His books may appeal to adults, but they primarily are created for, motivated by, and support the vision of kids. 1989, Viking, Ages 4 and up, $15.99 and $22.50. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-670-82759-2
ISBN: 0-14-054056-3
ISBN: 0-453-00768-6

Uptown
Bryan Collier
   Harlem is only a name to most American youngsters, but Collier makes it a real place as he describes what to see and hear, smell, taste and feel, in a tour around the town. The words are sparse but poetic, evocative of the many aspects of the area that a young boy experiences, but the pages are crowded with images, mostly assembled collages, with some paintings of people. The scenes are intricately conceived: rows of brownstone houses like chocolate bars, weekend shopping as a jumble of cars, people, fabric shapes, the Apollo Theater, a basketball game, little sisters walking to church. The brief text becomes part of the overall page design, often set in color with meandering lines. In a sense, the reader is given pieces of a puzzle to assemble in the imagination for a picture of what the boy calls home. 2000, Henry Holt and Company, Ages 6 to 9, $15.95. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
ISBN: 0-8050-5721-8

Up, Up and Away: A Book About Adverbs
Ruth Heller
   A grammar lesson has never been such fun. Heller approaches this part of speech in an organized, logical manner. She gives examples for the ways adverbs can be identified and used. The adverbs are boldly capitalized so they stand out in the rhyming sentences, making them easy for the reader to identify. The attractive graphic-style illustrations draw the reader into the book and demonstrate the adverb being discussed. The author cautions the reader to remember: "don't ever use NOT and NEVER together" for "you will always be in trouble if your negatives are double!" This is part of the "World of Language" series covering all aspects of grammar. 1998 (orig. 1991), Paperstar/Penguin Putnam Books for Young Readers, Ages 8 to 12, $6.99. Reviewer: Sharon Salluzzo
ISBN: 0-698-11663-1
ISBN: 0-448-40249-1

Up, Up and Away: A Book About Adverbs
Ruth Heller
   Bold, bright illustrations and playful rhymes introduce the particulars and peculiarities of the parts of speech in 10 inch-square books easy to hold up in front of a group as you sensitize youngsters to what makes good English. Ms Heller's similar Many Luscious Lollipops, Kites Sail High, and A Cache of Jewels target adjectives, verbs, and collective nouns, respectively. 1993 (orig. 1991), Grosset, Ages 3 to 10, $15.95 and $7.95. Reviewer: Beverly Kobrin
ISBN: 0-448-40249-1
ISBN: 0-448-40159-2

A Weave of Words
Robert D. San Souci
Illustrations by Raul Colon
   San Souci never disappoints readers, and here presents another interesting folk tale. This one, however, is also politically correct. Prince Vachagan, who has been spoiled by his parents, is handsome and good-hearted. But since he never saw a need to learn to read and write, he is astounded when he falls in love with a weaver's daughter, Anait, who agrees to marry him only when he can read, write, and do some type of handiwork. Once he applies himself, he not only wins Anait as his wife, he finds self satisfaction in his literacy and expertise as a weaver. In fact, his weaving and his wife end up saving his life. This folk tale will delight readers of all ages, and the illustrations are worthy of any fine art gallery. 1998, Orchard Books, Ages 5 and up, $15.95. Reviewer: Sue Preslar
ISBN: 0-531-30053-6

William Shakespeare's Macbeth
Retold by Bruce Coville
Pictures by Gary Kelley
   This dark drama has always held a strong appeal. The essence of the story and a judicious retention of Shakespeare's words make the text perfect for younger readers. Macbeth, with the aid of his wife, commits murder and treason. Each evil deed draws him further into misery and finally madness. In the end, Macbeth is vanquished-good prevails, the witches' prophecies come true and peace returns to the kingdom. The powerful text is accompanied by Kelley's equally powerful paintings. The full-page pastels are dark and convey the horror of the deeds and the dark forces that have driven Macbeth to commit them. 1997, Dial, Ages 7 and up, $16.99. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-8037-1899-3

William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream
Retold by Bruce Coville
Illustrated by Dennis Nolan
   A classic Shakespearean tragedy is made accessible to younger readers. Children can now enjoy reading about these lovesick teenagers and the mischievous games of Prince Oberon and his faithful servant, Puck. This version is a fantastic aid for introducing Shakespeare to children because it eliminates the intimidating Elizabethan language. Amazing and dramatic illustrations help recreate this passionate, yet humorous story. A great book to give as a gift due to the beauty of its pages, both in word and in picture. 1996, Dial Books, Ages 7 and up, $16.99 and $16.89. Reviewer: Sheree Van Vreede
ISBN: 0-8037-1784-9
ISBN: 0-8037-1785-7

William Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream
Retold by Bruce Coville
Illustrated by Dennis Nolan
   Midsummer Night's Dream is Bruce Coville's second retold Shakespeare tale. He handles the complexities skillfully. Illustrations by Nolan are a wonderful mix of detailed realism, powerful human emotions, and playful magic. Pictures give a sense of Nolan romping through his illustrations, whether he's capturing the impishness of Puck, foolishness of Bottom, or conflict of the lovers. Kindly, he gives character portraits on the end papers and we definitely used them in untangling the threads of the maze-like story. 1996, Dial, Ages 8a dn up, $16.99 and $16.89. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
ISBN: 0-8037-1784-9
ISBN: 0-8037-1785-7

William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet
Retold by Bruce Coville
Illustrations by Dennis Nolan
   "O she doth teach the torches to burn bright. Beauty too rich for use, for Earth too dear" murmured Romeo upon seeing Juliet for the first time. She too loves Romeo at first sight, but alas the two are from warring families. Tragedy follows both lovers and their families in Coville's version of Shakespeare's famous play. The author skillfully combines his own prose with key lines from the script. Young readers will delight in a version that is true to the original, yet easy to understand. Beautiful and emotional illustrations accompany the text, including a brilliant gatefold of the balcony scene where the two young lovers profess their devotion to one another. Both devoted Shakespeare fans and newcomers will enjoy countless hours of the dramatic text, making this an ideal read-aloud and discussion provoker. 1999, Dial Books/Penguin, Ages 8 and up, $16.99. Reviewer: Laura Hummel
ISBN: 0-8037-2462-4

Wind Child
Shirley Rousseau Murphy
Illustrations by Diane and Leo Dillon
   This lengthy, romantic, original tale has a strong, resourceful heroine and fairytale qualities. Resshia, the daughter of a stormy wind and "a girl who was not afraid of his wildness," is left alone after the death of her mother. She becomes a weaver of wondrous things. No man courts her, and despite efforts to find a husband, she remains alone. One day a prince arrives and she finally meets her magical match. The story is told in moving, poetic prose in framed blocks of text with bits of illustration. On the facing page is a similarly framed, more detailed picture in muted colors. Plastic relief sculptures created by Lee Dillon separate the text and illustrations. The visual effect is formal and dreamy, suggesting centuries of fairytales. Details of costume and the overall windswept quality of the scenes add to the otherworldliness of this handsome book. 1999, HarperCollins, Ages 7 to 10, $15.95. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
ISBN: 0-06-024903-X

Wind Child
Shirley Rousseau Murphy
Illustrations by the Dillons
   This beautiful and haunting tale has captured my interest and earned my respect. The sometimes disturbing concepts (weaving men to be her husbands, who come alive and then fade or crumble to dust) are full of meaning but clearly aimed at an older audience. The Dillons' wonderful artwork is put to good use-the wind swirls and roars through each perfectly composed painting. Their son, Lee Dillon has created bas-relief sculptures of wind blown faces that add texture and interest to the pages, though not in a way that adds substance to the story. A book so elegantly crafted as this deserves many quotable words of praise, but I cannot ignore the fact that it seems created for adults to rave about and not for children to delight in. 1999, Harper Collins, Ages 5 to 9, $15.95. Reviewer: Janet Morgan Stoeke
ISBN: 0-06-024903-X

The Wretched Stone
Chris Van Allsburg
   If there was ever any doubt that too much television is a threat to the human race, Van Allsburg makes his position known in this provocative tale. When a huge, glowing rock is found and loaded onboard a ship, the crew became mesmerized and regresses to an ape-like form. The captain takes matters into his own hands and scuttles the ship and the wretched stone. A great book for classroom discussion. 1991, Houghton, Ages 6 and up, $17.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-395-53307-4

The Yellow Star: The Legend of King Christian X of Denmark
Carmen Agra Deedy
Illustrations by Henri Sørensen
   King Christian X of Denmark was a much beloved monarch who mixed easily among his countrymen. He knew he was trusted and respected by them and shunned bodyguards or any other royal barriers between himself and his people. Stories are told of his daily rides through the city of Copenhagen and of his stalwart resistance to Nazi oppression and criminality. The legend retold here, is one in which the King risks everything-his identity, his monarchy, and his very life in an attempt to stop the Nazis from tearing apart his country and harming his people. As a model of righteousness, as a clever strategist, and as a devoted leader, King Christian X sets the standard. He deserves a legendary place in history and this elegant picture book places him there, front and center among the heroes of our times. The spare text tells the simple story with splendor and bronze-tinged full-page paintings quietly underscore the heartbreak and the majesty of the man and this legend. 2000, Peachtree Publishers, Ages 6 and up, $16.95. Reviewer: Judy Katsh
ISBN: 1-56145-208-4

Young Guinevere
Robert D. San Souci
Illustrated by Jamichael Henterly
   This tale of Guinevere begins when she is a young child under her father's loving care. It emphasizes her independent nature, as she explores the forbidden woods surrounding her castle home. Guinevere shows strength and courage when she realizes that she alone can brave the forest to bring the message of war to King Arthur, her future husband. Guinevere's successful mission saves the kingdom for Arthur, and the two fall in love. The book ends as Guinevere leaves her father to marry the king. A postscript tells readers that there is much more to this story; that Arthur and Guinevere do not live happily ever after. This story of Guinevere's youth is told in a compelling way, with lush illustrations that enhance the text. The full-page drawings showcase the beauty and mystery of this timeless tale. 1996, Bantam Doubleday Dell, Ages 9 to 12, $16.00, $15.95, and $5.99. Reviewer: Jeanne K. Pettenati
ISBN: 0-385-41623-7
ISBN: 0-385-41624-5
ISBN: 0-440-41291-9

Young Lancelot
Robert D. San Souci
Illustrated by Jamichael Henterly
   Lancelot was raised by a powerful enchantress, Niniane, the Lady of the Lake. It was his destiny to become the greatest knight serving Arthur, the greatest king, but even though he was handsome and skilled at combat, Lancelot initially had a heart of stone. In this story, Niniane helps him to learn about kindness and caring for others so that he does indeed become the greatest knight. An author's note provides sources for this compressed and edited version of Lancelot's early years. The richly detailed illustrations ably depict the clothing and armor worn by this handsome knight. 1996, Doubleday, Ages 6 to 10, $15.95. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-385-32171-6

Zoom
Istvan Banyai
   In this wordless picture book, Banyai takes readers on a visual journey, one step back at a time, to see an image in its broader context. For example, from a boy on a cruise ship, the image shifts to the whole ship, which is actually a poster, etc. Re-Zoom is a similar book by the same author. 1995, Viking, Ages 0 and up, $13.99. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
ISBN: 0-670-85804-8

To stay up to date on new books on this topic, consider subscribing to The Children's Literature Comprehensive Database. For your free trial, click here.

 

To stay up to date on new books on this topic, consider subscribing to The Children's Literature Comprehensive Database. For your free trial, click here.

If you're interested in reviewing children's and young adult books, then send a resume and writing sample to marilyn@childrenslit.com.

Back to Top