HERE COME THE BRIDES

PLB 0-8027-8469-0 It is hard not to get fussy and a bit sentimental when talking about wedding mores and customs, as is the case here. Jackson (The Book of Slime, 1997, etc.) is full of wonderful bits of wedding lore, from many different times and cultures, illustrated in exquisite detail by Heyer’s richly colored portraits. She explains that white wasn’t a traditional color for wedding dresses in the west until the 19th century (leaving out that it was because Queen Victoria wore white to her own wedding): Today, Norwegian brides may don green, and Arab brides red. Sharing food between bride and groom is nearly universal: Japanese couples eat from the same plate of rice, while other newlyweds bite into the same piece of candy. Rings, veils, attendants, and flowers are discussed, and the groom makes a mere cameo appearance. Gary Soto’s Snapshots From the Wedding (1997) is more fun, but this will fit the bill for those looking for a drier, fact-based approach. (bibliography) (Picture book/nonfiction. 5-9)

Pub Date: April 1, 1998

ISBN: 0-8027-8468-2

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Walker

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 1998

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VOTE!

After the sorry example of the 2000 presidential election, it’s good to be reminded of the simple beauty—and hard-won right—of voting for a candidate. And Christelow goes farther in this primer on the process of electing a candidate. Simple language, gay color, and humorous subplots make for an appealing introduction to electoral politics, and she wisely complements her somewhat dry explanatory text with a typically funny word-bubble story of one woman’s mayoral campaign. Readers learn about political parties and polls, voter registration, to be wary of campaign advertising, the right to recounts, and are urged to conduct research into the candidates. There’s also a very handy timeline of voting rights that conveys the eye-opening evolution of democracy in the US. Impressively, Christelow gives to each individual vote a sense of importance—an act of participation that nestles in the heart of democracy. (Picture book. 5-8)

Pub Date: Aug. 18, 2003

ISBN: 0-618-24754-8

Page Count: 48

Publisher: Clarion

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2003

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THE FISH SKIN

When Grandfather Sun pauses to admire his reflection in a lake, the villagers enjoy his warmth so much that they ask the clouds to leave—but they soon regret their impulse when the lingering sun parches the land. To save his people, a young man dons a magic fish skin, summons the clouds, and hurls lake water into the sky to fall as rain. This Cree legend about preserving balance in nature is retold in simple, fluid prose from an oral transmission. Morrisseau is a young artist of Chippewa extraction; his illustrations are sometimes overliteral (a ``dusty cough'' is depicted as a solid-looking mass ejected from Wolf's throat), with only scattered and sketchy details of Cree art or cultural style, and his juxtapositions of bright tones are far from subtle, but they do add color and feeling to the story. (Folklore/Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: April 19, 1993

ISBN: 1-56282-401-5

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Hyperion

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 1993

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