NIGHTFALL, COUNTRY LAKE by David Cunningham

NIGHTFALL, COUNTRY LAKE

by , illustrated by
Age Range: 2 & up

KIRKUS REVIEW

 In 24 carefully chosen words and 14 eloquently modulated pastel illustrations, readers follow a small boy from that moment on a late summer afternoon when the breeze dies, through ruddy sunset and misty twilight, until he falls asleep to the sound of crickets. Like the splash of a fish accentuating the stillness of a lake, the spare text set in the white expanse of each lefthand page accentuates the mood of deepening quiet in the pictures opposite. The style of the art ranges from a precisely literal closeup of a frog to a mistily impressionistic view of a neighboring house to the small final scene, in which lake, woods, and sky are represented by three abstract bands of blue, dark green, and dusky violet. A few meticulously observed details punctuate these carefully controlled scenes, their content pared down almost to the essentials: the last gleam of the setting sun in the shallows at lake's edge; the big old-fashioned key and tangle of fishing line looped over a nail outside the screen door; the fur of a patient cat backlit by light spilling from the house, sitting near its empty dish at the bottom of the steps; the two small rocks on the windowsill next to the boy's bed. Cunningham's first solo effort is an unqualified success--this masterful production is a reminder that now and then, less really is more. (Picture book. 2+)

Pub Date: March 1st, 1995
ISBN: 0-8075-5624-6
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: Whitman
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 1995




DEEP AND WIDE: BODIES OF WATER IN PICTURE BOOKS:

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