ROLLING THUNDER by Kate Messner

ROLLING THUNDER

by ; illustrated by
Age Range: 6 - 8
BUY NOW FROM
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

A tribute to the massive annual motorcycle rally in Washington, D.C., that honors our country’s veterans.

Fittingly for an event that is all about remembering, Ruth’s illustrations depict hazy, often translucent figures riding through misty golden light past the towering statue of Abraham Lincoln to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. A white child narrates in terse rhyme: “Grandpa rides for Joe and Tom, / friends he lost in Vietnam.” Traveling to rendezvous with Grandpa by train, the narrator adds, “our trip is for Uncle Zach, / flying airplanes far away. / His picture rides with me today.” Dressed in camo and riding in the grizzled grandfather’s sidecar, the child reaches the wall, where they “Leave a single flower. Kneel. / Names in charcoal. Cry. And heal.” Then at day’s end it’s time to ride again, with “Whispered wishes. Come home soon.” Only a quick mention of “POWs, MIAs” acknowledges that they are the event’s chief focus (or at least the focus of its organizers). More troublingly, in the art almost all of the visible faces, both of riders and in the background crowds, are white.

A deeply felt if sketchy companion for Eve Bunting’s The Wall, illustrated by Ronald Himler (1990), or the plethora of introductions to the Memorial Day holiday. (afterword) (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: April 25th, 2017
ISBN: 978-0-545-47012-4
Publisher: Scholastic
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 2017




MORE BY KATE MESSNER

ChildrenTHE EXACT LOCATION OF HOME by Kate Messner
by Kate Messner
ChildrenFERGUS AND ZEKE by Kate Messner
by Kate Messner

MORE BY GREG RUTH

ChildrenOTHER WORLDS by Jon Scieszka
by Jon Scieszka
ChildrenTHE LOST BOY by Greg Ruth
by Greg Ruth
ChildrenRED KITE, BLUE KITE by Ji-li Jiang
by Ji-li Jiang

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

ChildrenTHE WALL by Ronald Himler
by Ronald Himler
ChildrenYEAR OF THE JUNGLE by Suzanne Collins
by Suzanne Collins
ChildrenSOMETIMES WE WERE BRAVE by Pat Brisson
by Pat Brisson