A DANCE FOR THREE by Ann--Illus. Schweninger


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Three wordless sequences, freshly imagined and gently, invitingly pictured. In the first, a grasshopper and a raccoon are dancing to the music of a man with a horn who turns--before their startled, delighted eyes--into an elephant tootling a tune through his trunk. That fanciful conceit is followed by an inspired mini-drama which, however, doesn't quite come across: a man is rowing a lady-with-parasol when first a dragon, then an angel, then a dinosaur, then Santa Claus plop into, and out of, their boat; but when Santa catches hold of the runners of his passing sleigh, the lady lifts her parasol and flies after him. This, one realizes by looking closely at the faces, is the story of a lover scorned; but the man's increasing disgust at the arrival of interlopers, and the woman's increasing joy, are not immediately apparent--and without an understanding of their feelings there is no point to the comings and goings until her final take-off. All, nonetheless, are a pleasure to watch, so infectious is the presence of the little watercolor figures on the white paper--and their joy in just being alive carries the last, slight sequence in which three animal musicians--""Moon Makers""--play harder and harder until the moon is finally full, and then flop down in exhaustion. Here's a new author-artist with genuine picture-book ideas and a simple, individual style--who needs only to add a little emphasis to her more ambitious illustrations.

Pub Date: April 1st, 1979
Publisher: Dial