SAILOR BOY JIG by Margaret Wise Brown


by & illustrated by
Age Range: 2 - 5
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Any return of this beloved author is an event—and this is an especially exuberant one. Derived from her Bank Street lessons, this story explores sound, concept, and fun in equal measures, while providing opportunity for the liveliest of read-alouds. A rhythmic instruction of making and listening to simple words while making steps and jumps, it urges finishing with eruptions into a jig. Brown’s technique is familiar, but just as much an event here is the inspired choice of re-design. Andreasen (The House in the Mail, p. 53, etc.) paints a squeezably happy puppy in a sailor suit, dancing his mariner’s jig in an overflow of terpsichorean delight. Brown’s language comparisons are echoed by the illustrator’s use of bold, blue line drawings on the margins of some pages, lending palpability to the author’s educational intent. The effect is a package that may turn out to be more satisfying than the original. One can already hear the stamp and thud of laughing kindergartners, and if you peek further in your mind you’ll see them, one arm in front, one in back, hopping to their teacher’s musical exhortation as she falls back on this tried and true but freshly new classic. (Picture book. 2-5)

Pub Date: May 1st, 2002
ISBN: 0-689-83348-2
Page count: 32pp
Publisher: McElderry
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1st, 2002


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