NEW YORK IS ENGLISH, CHATTANOOGA IS CREEK by Chris Raschka

NEW YORK IS ENGLISH, CHATTANOOGA IS CREEK

by & illustrated by
Age Range: 5 - 10
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KIRKUS REVIEW

This poetically whimsical celebration of the origins of American place-names pulls together a veritable melting pot of cities to attend a party. New York has three friends—Minneapolis, El Paso and Chattanooga—but he wants to broaden his circle of acquaintance. Like all parties, this one picks up nicely after a slow start, Amarillo, Green Bay and Baton Rouge all comparing colors, and Seattle, Washington and Tuscaloosa trading military tales. Each city is represented by a characteristically loosely drawn cartoon with oversize head and totemic hat. New York himself, as an English nobleman, sports a black beauty mark and a little Empire State Building rising out of his powdered wig. Each city is glossed briefly with an allusion to its linguistic origins—“Beulah met Bethesda. They’re both Aramaic!”—which is more thoroughly explained in the annotated “Guest List” that precedes the narrative. The humor with which Raschka invests his cities with personality is entirely winning, as is his awe-inspired theme: “A thousand names, and hundred languages, a million, and a million and a million people name one nation.” This offering stands as a quietly enthusiastic reminder of our collective histories. (Picture book/nonfiction. 5-10)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 2005
ISBN: 0-689-84600-2
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Richard Jackson/Atheneum
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1st, 2005




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