Books by Clare Mackie

by Ann Doro, illustrated by Clare Mackie
Released: March 1, 1996

Doro poses the pickle of which lively, identical twin sister- -Jenny or Ivory—is doing what in a doting, rhythmic litany of their exploits, aided immeasurably by Mackie's witty illustrations. The twins, in constant pirouette, sport identical pigtails in constant electric arousal and, of course, identical dresses, so the reappearing question of identity is moot until the last spread; their initials appear on their headboards as they prepare for a well-earned rest—for everybody. The focus of the antic and episodic pictures is the giggle and perpetual whirl of both girls, with just one forgivable touch of self-promotion. This is a lighthearted approach to the oft-asked parental question, ``Who did this?'' that will have readers—twins and twin wannabes—nodding in recognition. (Picture book. 4-7) Read full book review >
RED CAT, WHITE CAT by Peter Mandel
Released: Oct. 1, 1994

In keeping with Bill Martin Jr.'s worldview (the book is published under his imprint) that the imagination is unlocked through the sheer joy of language and further fired by strong imagery, Mandel (The Official Cat I.Q. Test, not reviewed) has written a simple, playful text—much like Martin's work, with two words per page and the couplets rhyming on every other page—to accompany Mackie's cats. The activities, gestures, and behavior of the cats illustrate the ideas of opposites and distinctions: hot/cold, up/down, day/night, red/white. Most of the images are very successful, although a couple—shy/bold, farm/town—are placed in a slightly obscure context. Mackie knows how to draw the eye right where she wants it on the page through bold, uncluttered painting. Her cats are utterly appealing but maintain an edginess: The darkly shadowed eyes and Cheshire grins suggest a none-too-distant lunacy. Snappy and humorous, encouraging of many return visits. (Fiction/Picture book. 4-7) Read full book review >