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"GOOD MORNING, CITY" by Elaine Moore Kirkus Star



Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1995
Publisher: BridgeWater

Striking paintings make up for the lapses in the text of this paean to the early hours in the city, which begins when the floodlights on the tops of tall buildings and the streetlights below still shine, and ends when the sun is high and people are thronging to work and to school. In between, readers see the el, its windows brightly lit, traveling past still-dark office and apartment buildings; newspapers dropped off at a shuttered kiosk as the river reflects the brilliant streaks of dawn; an impossibly large cargo ship threading its way through an open drawbridge; subway workers underground; and the sun gilding the gothic spires of a cathedral. Moore (Grandma's Garden, 1994, etc.) employs highly descriptive images (the sky as ""blue as a teacup,"" the ""rubber lips"" of a school bus door) that are sometimes sloppy: the ""hissing steam"" in the subway (the hissing is from compressed air), ""steeples"" defined as ""steep points"" (there can be several such points on a gothic building, but only the tower-like structures are steeples), or ""cathedral bells that harken each new day"" (harken as a transitive verb is archaic; to suggest that cathedral bells ""hear"" or ""listen to"" each new day is confusing). Readers can skip these graceless spots and make discoveries in Low's pictures, each of which suggests a story of its own.