Aside from the lack of continuity of the photographs, as an introduction to lacrosse, this book is a score.

READ REVIEW

MY FIRST BOOK OF LACROSSE

MOSTLY EVERYTHING EXPLAINED ABOUT THE GAME

An introduction to the sport of lacrosse for beginners.

Sports Illustrated for Kids presents the basic principles and vocabulary of lacrosse, including the equipment, where it is played, and the positions of each player, as well as describing the differences between women’s and men’s lacrosse. The account follows the format of a game, with scoreboard-type boxes that keep track of the time and quarter. Vocabulary words, such as “cradle,” “face-off,” “slashing,” and “offsides,” are written in big block letters to emphasize importance. Collaged-in photographs of real players engaged in particular actions of the game appear on bright, colored backgrounds. These photographs are of players on different teams, so with each turn of the page there is a loss of continuity. Two little cartoon characters—a boy and girl—appear on each page and add silly commentary and comedic actions, like bringing a vacuum into the game to steal the ball. Other thought and speech bubbles are slapped on above the real-life photographs, adding often mindless but humorous commentary. The writing gives detailed explanations of what to expect in the game, but some of the illustrations can be confusing. Most of the players in the photographs appear to be white; the cartoon girl has brown skin, and the cartoon boy is pale.

Aside from the lack of continuity of the photographs, as an introduction to lacrosse, this book is a score. (Informational picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: April 17, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-68330-078-6

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Liberty Street/Time Inc. Books

Review Posted Online: Feb. 13, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2018

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The many enchanting elements of dance and story in The Sleeping Beauty ballet come alive for young children.

BALLET SCHOOL

Read! Practice! Perform!

Three girls (Amirah, Violet, and Sahani) and two boys (Joonwon and Alejandro) take ballet class. They clearly demonstrate warm-up moves, basic feet and arm positions executed at the barre, and center-floor movements including jumps. Their facial expressions vary from happy to fretful. When they have performed their “reverence,” or bows, they are ready to move on to a performance of The Sleeping Beauty, a popular story ballet danced to a beautiful score by Tchaikovsky. Violet’s mom, a former dancer, enters to tell the children the story, and they act out the various roles, from the elegant Lilac Fairy to the evil Carabosse. Each role involves steps that they previously learned and very expressive facial and body emoting. Bouder is a principal dancer with the New York City Ballet and writes with enthusiasm and knowledge. The uncluttered cartoon illustrations are lively and colorfully detailed, depicting a multiracial cast (as hinted at by the children’s names). That Violet and her ex-professional mom are white somewhat undermines the egalitarian message. While it may prove challenging for readers to actually try the steps on their own, especially the jumps, they should enjoy practicing. When readers play the score (not included but readily available) in the background, correct ballet movement or simply expressive individual movements can result in a very enjoyable staging.

The many enchanting elements of dance and story in The Sleeping Beauty ballet come alive for young children. (glossary) (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Aug. 4, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-7112-5128-1

Page Count: 64

Publisher: Frances Lincoln

Review Posted Online: June 3, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2020

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An inspiring account of a woman who followed her dreams.

A GIRL NAMED ROSITA

THE STORY OF RITA MORENO: ACTOR, SINGER, DANCER, TRAILBLAZER!

The story of Rosita Dolores Alverio—best known today as Rita Moreno—a girl from Puerto Rico who loved to sing and dance.

At a young age, Rosita leaves her island home with her mother to settle in New York City. Her new school is a “fortress of brick” where she is teased for “her accent, darker skin, and curly hair.” In order to speak back to the bullies, Rosita practices until her inglés is perfect; this tenacity will continue throughout her life. She starts dancing lessons at 6, and it is soon clear that “onstage, she is home.” As her dancing and acting careers progress, gender and ethnic stereotypes pen her in. She must put on a fake accent to play stereotypically exotic parts. Finally, the role of a strong Puerto Rican woman comes, and it is hers: Anita in West Side Story. For this she wins the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, the first Latinx performer to ever win an Oscar. It is here that the story ends, though the backmatter includes an author’s note and timeline that show that Rosita—now Rita—continues a life of professional successes and lifelong political activism. Espinosa’s illustrations are as vibrant as the character he portrays. Rosita and her mother have beige skin and black hair, and the New Yorkers are multiethnic, but the people—mostly men—that surround her in Hollywood are White.

An inspiring account of a woman who followed her dreams. (Picture book/biography. 4-8)

Pub Date: Nov. 3, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-06-287770-3

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Sept. 15, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2020

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