Books by Linda Zuckerman

A TASTE FOR RABBIT by Linda Zuckerman
Released: Oct. 1, 2007

This uneven allegory will have a difficult time finding an audience. Two societies of polytheistic, sentient, clothed adult animals are suffering the effects of a harsh winter. Quentin is a scholarly rabbit who lives under stringent military laws. Families of rabbits are disappearing, and he and his friends believe the government may be behind it. Harry, a fox, is living in poverty until his rich, cruel younger brother Isaac makes him an offer: If Harry can find out why Isaac's scouts are not returning from their missions to the fortress protecting the rabbit warren, Isaac will pay him generously. Along the way, Quentin and Harry both learn the truth behind the other's deeply corrupt yet intelligent world. In their travels, Harry and Quentin are both helped in their search for the truth by neutral animals like badgers and raccoons, but although their stories intertwine, they only briefly converge. Disguising human nature behind animals works in picture books, but the tween and teen target audience of this book will probably not want to read a book about talking animals, especially talking animals who are parents and business owners rather than teens. The frustrating lack of closure begs for a sequel. (Fiction. 10-14)Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 1, 2006

The very model of an instantly beloved bedtime story, destined to replace any number of lesser, though popular efforts. In lambent cadence, the text takes the form of a lullaby, with gently repeated phrases: "I will hold you 'til you sleep / Safe and warm within my arms / Dream of springtime's gentle breezes / While my lullaby surrounds you / Dearest baby, child of mine / I will hold you 'til you sleep." Muth's exquisite watercolor and gouache images take the tale from spring to autumn, winter and spring again, as a small boy grows and his parents age. In one example, "I will kiss you when you fall" depicts first the mother comforting the boy when he's fallen from his bike, and then the same phrase shows the father consoling a teenage boy while in the distance a girl is running off hand-in-hand with another guy. The lovely reassurance of, "I will love you all your life," is echoed visually, as the boy, holding a cell phone in a European church square, faces a page where the graying parents are smiling into their phone. It closes with rainbows, grandchildren and the suggestion to carry the love forward. This isn't cheap sentimentality, but deep feeling and lovely art perfectly in tune. (Picture book. 4-9)Read full book review >