LIBERTY!

On the day of its unveiling, the flag covering the Statue of Liberty’s face was mistakenly lowered too soon; Drummond imagines how it happened. The harbor was filled with boats—some of them bringing new immigrants to this country, and one containing women protesting the new statue. They found it odd that liberty should be portrayed as a woman when women were not allowed to vote in the US, and in fact only one woman and one small girl were allowed at the unveiling ceremony on the island. But the island was crowded with men—men who helped build the statue, put it together, and transport it from France. And in the crowd was a small boy enlisted by Mr. Bartholdi to signal him with his handkerchief. While everyone was waiting, the young French girl sneezed, and the young boy offered his handkerchief. And that is how the world came to see the Statue’s face a little too early. Enhancing the story are Drummond’s (Casey Jones, 2001, etc.) marvelous watercolors full of bright yellows, blues, and reds. The rainy gray day is reflected in the grayish-green water and the dark clothing and umbrellas of the crowds, while the excitement and importance of the event are seen in the brightly colored flags of France and the US. As the story mentions the men who put the statue together in America or made the statue in France, vignettes show the various stages and steps involved in its construction. In closing, Drummond reminds readers what freedom really means. An author’s note introduces the story, separating the facts of the day from those details he imagined and giving more historical information about Lady Liberty. (Picture book. 4-10)

Pub Date: April 3, 2002

ISBN: 0-374-34385-3

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Frances Foster/Farrar, Straus & Giroux

Review Posted Online: June 24, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2002

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MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE

An inspiring story of young boy's compelling desire to read. As a boy of nine, Booker works in a salt mine from the dark of early morning to the gloom of night, hungry for a meal, but even hungrier to learn to read. Readers follow him on his quest in Malden, Virginia, where he finds inspiration in a man ``brown as me'' reading a newspaper on a street corner. An alphabet book helps, but Booker can't make the connection to words. Seeking out ``that brown face of hope'' once again, Booker gains a sense of the sounds represented by letters, and these become his deliverance. Bradby's fine first book is tautly written, with a poetic, spiritual quality in every line. The beautifully executed, luminous illustrations capture the atmosphere of an African-American community post-slavery: the drudgery of days consumed by back- breaking labor, the texture of private lives conducted by lantern- light. There is no other context or historical note about Booker T. Washington's life, leaving readers to piece together his identity. Regardless, this is an immensely satisfying, accomplished work, resonating first with longing and then with joy. (Picture book. 5- 8)

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-531-09464-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Orchard

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 1995

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THE STONE OF FIRE

From the Cavemice series , Vol. 1

Warp back in time for a prehistoric spinoff adventure with Geronimo Stilton’s ancestor, Geronimo Stiltonoot, in Old Mouse City.

Readers will find Geronimo Stiltonoot a familiar character, outfitted differently from descendant Stilton yet still running a newspaper and having wild adventures. In this introduction to prehistoric mouse life, someone has stolen the most powerful and important artifact housed by the Old Mouse City Mouseum: the Stone of Fire. It’s up to Stiltonoot and his fellow sleuth and friend, Hercule Poirat, to uncover not only the theft, but a dangerous plot that jeopardizes all of Old Mouse City. As stand-ins for the rest of the Stilton cast, Stiltonoot has in common with Stilton a cousin named Trap, a sister named Thea and a nephew named Benjamin. The slapstick comedy and design, busy with type changes and color, will be familiar for Stilton readers. The world is fictionalized for comedic effect, featuring funny uses for dinosaurs and cheeky references to how far back in time they are, with only the occasional sidebar that presents facts. The story takes a bit long to get started, spending a lot of time reiterating the worldbuilding information laid out before the first chapter. But once it does start, it is an adventure Stilton readers will enjoy. Geronimo Stiltonoot has the right combination of familiarity and newness to satisfy Stilton fans. (Fiction. 6-10)

 

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 2013

ISBN: 978-0-545-44774-4

Page Count: 128

Publisher: Scholastic

Review Posted Online: Nov. 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2012

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